Kubrat Pulev (18-0, 9 KOs) has to adapt for a new opponent, as the IBF mandatory challenger to Heavyweight World Champion Wladimir Klitschko was preparing to stay busy and step into the ring against Sherman Williams. However, Williams did suffer an injury to his right hand in his final preparations and is therefore unable to fight Pulev on December 14.
Instead it will be Joey Abell (29-6, 28 KOs, 2 NC) to take on the IBF International Champion at the Jahnsportforum Neubrandenburg, Germany. 6 foot 4 Abell will probably represent an even bigger challenge to Pulev as 5 foot 11 Williams, at least literally.
In terms of quality of opposition, either man is about equal. The goal here wasn’t to test Pulev against a top guy, but to keep him busy and in action, and to bide time until they secure a title bid against Klitschko for 2014.
“It doesn’t matter who I have to beat,” stated a self-confident Pulev. “My goal is clear: a fight against Wladimir Klitschko to take all his belts from him!”