Derevyanchenko: Jermall never faced anyone like me

Top contender Sergiy Derevyanchenko believes that his combination of skills and experience will make him the toughest challenge that WBC middleweight champion Jermall Charlo has faced in his career, as they near their showdown this Saturday on Showtime PPV.

“I’ll definitely be his toughest test at middleweight,” said Derevyanchenko. “Jermall has never faced anyone like me. I’ll apply more pressure than he’s used to. He’s also never faced anyone with my footwork. I’ll fight more on the inside than his previous opponents.”

Derevyanchenko sports a 13-2 pro record with 10 knockouts, following an extensive amateur career that included representing his native Ukraine at the 2008 Olympics as part of his 390-20 overall ledger. A pro since 2014, Derevyanchenko’s experience in the amateurs has aided him as he climbed up the middleweight division in the paid ranks.

“My amateur experience has helped me a lot,” said Derevyanchenko. “I came to the pros with much more experience in the ring than most other fighters and it’s been a big part of what I’ve accomplished. I believe that all of that experience will help me get the win on Saturday and take Charlo’s belt.”

The 34-year-old now lives in Brooklyn and has avoided any negative training impact of the pandemic by working with his head trainer Andre Rozier at their private gym in New Jersey. September 26 will be Derevyanchenko’s third world title fight, after losing a narrow decision to Gennadiy Golovkin last October and a split decision against Daniel Jacobs in 2018. Each of his previous title fights have presented different experiences that he can take into the Charlo fight, based off the similarities and differences between the opponents.

“Golovkin is a very different fighter than Charlo, but Jacobs is similar stylistically, so that’s something I’ll be used to,” said Derevyanchenko. “This training camp has been very similar to camps for my previous fights though. We just brought in different sparring partners for this one. We’re using fighters who can show us what Charlo will bring to the ring.

“We’re making necessary adjustments based off all our experience and developing a game plan specifically for Charlo. The sparring partners have been giving me great work and I’m absolutely ready for September 26.”

In both of his title opportunities, Derevyanchenko has suffered a knockdown in the first round, only to battle back and nearly win the fight. Despite the similar script, Derevyanchenko is not focusing on those opening round mistakes as he prepares for Charlo.

“I’ll be very focused in the early rounds against Charlo, we’re not dwelling on the past,” said Derevyanchenko. “We always have an eye looking forward. I’ll try to get the win faster against Charlo, so we’ll be applying more pressure early.

“Those first round knockdowns were just brief moments in those fights. I quickly moved on, put them behind me and fought my way back into it. I told myself that I may have lost the first round, but I just had to be better in the remaining rounds.”

With fight week here and the bulk of the hard training behind him, Derevyanchenko is prepared for the challenge Charlo presents, no matter how the fight goes or which strategy Charlo enters the ring with.

“I’m not solely focused on the fight going one certain way, we just have our game plan and we’ll see what happens in the ring,” said Derevyanchenko. “If I can knock him out, I’ll be ready to go for it. But if it goes 12 rounds, I have all of the skills to win a decision.”

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  • Sergiy Derevyanchenko does have some imprssive skills. He’s only lost twice, a split decision against Daniel Jacobs and a decision loss to GGG. Charlo is gonna have someone in front of him constantly so he better be on his toes. Wouldn’t be surprised to see an upset.

    • There is no upset if the Ukrainian whoops Charlo. In all honesty, without corrupt judges or officials I don’t see how Derev loses this one. Charlo is so unproven it’s not even funny.

      • Chris: i agree with u 100%. Truth be told, He is much more battle tested than Charlo. I have D’chenko winning this fight. I wld be surprised if Charlo actually won. Lets go D’Chenko!!! I wld like to see Charlo get dropped once or twice in the process!!!!

  • This will definitely be the best fighter Mall has ever faced. We’ll see how good Mall is this Saturday.

  • Good matchup. Charlo now 30 years old and facing, in reality, his first true test at middleweight. The overprotection of supposedly world class fighters has really gone too far. Anyone remember Leonard-Hearns l? Ray was 25 and had already lost to Duran. Tommy was 23, got knocked out but still came back to become an all-time great. Hopefully this will become a trend again. Way better for the sport and the fans!

    • Having multiple belts in each division has something to do with the best not fighting the best as often as we would like. If they ever manage to get it back to one World Champion per division, that obviously eliminates all shortcuts. Unfortunately, that will probably never happen….

  • Sergiy will present heavy inside pressure and body punching on Charlo. Therefore, the referee’s style may play an important factor in setting limits to possible clinching by Charlo.

    Charlo must stay on the outside to primarily establish his jab and thumping right hand. However, Charlo better prepare himself for intense inside fighting because Sergiy’s pressure may take away Charlo’s lateral movement and outside fighting.

    This fight will involve a great clash of styles with high intensity. Bravo!!

  • If the fight past the 6th, Jermall could be in troubles with the relentless attack of Derevyanchenko. Not really a surprise if Jermall is stopped on the late rounds, but beware of his power, specially the first 5 rounds.
    This is a sort of cross road fight for each man. Derevyanchenko is getting old and probably this is his last opportunity to becomes a champion, Charlo in the other hand needs an impressive win to be considered for a mega fight, wether against GGG or Canelo, no room for a lackluster performance, like the one against Korobov. So, I expect the best of each of them in this fight. Good luck to them

  • Derevyanchenko has faded late in a couple of his fights. He was in trouble against Culcay towards the end. However, he gave Triple G everything he could handle and could have won that decision. It was that tough a fight. Jacobs couldn’t handle him either but managed to eke out the decision.

    Of all the fights coming up this weekend, the one I am really looking forward to is the Charlo-Derevyanchenko matchup.This fight is intriguing in that it is the first real test for Jermall. I really would like to see what he can do against a fighter with technical skills and the ability to apply relentless pressure each round.

    Jermall does have the skills to win but to me, this fight is a tossup. If he can win decisively, this would put him in the conversation for the biggest fights possible at middleweight. However, I wouldn’t be surprised if Derevyanchenko wins the fight. He’s that good.

    • “If he can win decisively, this would put him in the conversation for the biggest fights possible at middleweight.”
      Mall is a world champion and has been in conversations for the biggest Mid fights for years. Canelo was ordered to fight him and we know how that went.

  • Derevyanchenko only has 15 fights but this his 3rd title shot? wonder why he gets so much favor? He gets to try again and again and again.

  • The crip pop music, bravado, and all the other BLM/CRIP/Blood crap will not save Charlo from a major ass beating.

    Expect the corner to throw in the towel either before, during, or after the 9th round.

    Charlo might even take a knee, or, a nap, on the canvas.

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