Promoter Tom Loeffler would like to see 44-year-old former IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko come out of his three-year retirement to resume his pro career.
The 6’6″ Wladimir (64-5, 53 KOs) gave Anthony Joshua all he could handle in his last fight in 2017 in front of a packed house at Wembley Stadium on April 29, 2017.
Wladimir lost the fight by an 11th round knockout, but he could have won had he followed his trainer Johnathon Banks and brother Vitali Klitschko’s advice to finish Joshua off after he had him hurt and on the deck in round six.
Wladimir did his own thing and tried to box the hurt and severely fatigued Joshua, and it backfired on him. It almost worked, but the crowd woke Joshua up in the 11th round and knocked out Wladimir.
In hindsight, Klitschko understands that he should have gone for the finish against Joshua, but he made a safety-first calculated decision to try and box him, and he paid for that mistake. Had Klitschko’s late trainer Emanuel Steward been in his corner that night, he would have pressured him to knock out Joshua.
“Wladimir stays in tremendous condition for not being an active professional athlete,” said Loeffler to RingTV. “He’s always training, he’s always working on his cardio, and his body shape almost looks identical to when he was defending his titles.”
Wladimir has only been retired for three years, and he looks like he’s still capable of fighting in this era against the best. If he came back for real, he could make massive money fighting Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua in rematches, and perhaps beat both of them.
With Mike Tyson and Roy Jones Jr about to fight an eight-round exhibition match on pay-per-view next month on September 12, Wladimir can come back and make big money doing similar fights.
The 1996 Olympic gold medalist Wladimir isn’t hurting for money the way some retired fighters are, and it’ll be tougher for him to find the motivation to come out of retirement.
Wladimir Is Financially Set
According to Celebrity Net Worth, Klitschko has a net worth of $60 million. Having that kind of a nest egg makes it tough for Wladimir to have the same type of hunger that the less prosperous heavyweights possess.
For the average money-driven person, it’s hard to relate to a fighter like Wladimir because you could argue that most of us would jump at the chance to fight if they had the opportunity to double their income in two fights potentially. Who wouldn’t want to increase their net worth the way Wladimir could if he wanted to.
Wladimir has the popularity to where he wouldn’t even need to fight against top boxers to make money. He could face the second tier guys or do exhibition matches against Mike Tyson, Evander Holyfield, and Shannon Briggs. Wladimir vs. Mike Tyson would be a huge seller.
Of course, there would be risk involved for Wladimir against all of those fighters. Still, if he’s not afraid to potentially humiliate himself, then he can remake his career and end it on a positive note than the way it ended with him losing to Joshua and Fury in consecutive fights.
Loeffler Believes Klitschko Can Do It
“If there’s anyone who can do it and still compete at the world championship level, it would be Wladimir,” said Loeffler. “I would love to see him come back, but ultimately that’s a decision that he will have to make.”
Wladimir has been teasing the fans and media about a possible comeback for the last three years, and he never does return to the ring. For Wladimir to have stayed out of action all this time, it suggests that he’s still haunted about his losses to Joshua, Fury, Corrie Sanders, and Ross Puritty.
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