Everything was going perfectly to script in round four of Dillian Whyte vs Alexander Povetkin last weekend.
The Brit floored the Russian twice and appeared to be on the verge of a statement win which would cement his place as the mandatory challenger for the winner of Tyson Fury vs Deontay Wilder 3.
Then the uppercut landed, and the state of the entire heavyweight division changed in an instant.
Povetkin knocked Whyte cold in round five
What next for Dillian Whyte and Alexander Povetkin?
Whyte has now declared his intention to activate his contractual clause for a rematch with Povetkin.
The Russian’s team insist they will follow through with this obligation.
Promoter Eddie Hearn has said he is planning to stage the fight before the end of this year.
He told Boxing Social: “Dillian, really, has to go at the end of November at the latest
Whyte had success against Povetkin
“That would mean a three week rest now and getting back into camp.
“He’s physically fine, we know it was a bad knockout and there will be a 28-day suspension which won’t really affect this fight.
“That’s something we’ve got to speak to Povetkin about. I think Dillian would be right and ready to box at the end of November.
“Lets see if Povetkin – we know he’s under contract for the rematch – but he’s got to be comfortable to take that fight at that period as well.
“I think all being well this fight could happen as early as November, but we’ll have to see how things go.”
He believes he can avenge the defeat
What does this mean for Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder?
Whyte previously stood as the WBC mandatory and was due to get his title shot at the winner of Fury vs Wilder 3.
Povetkin has taken this position as mandatory, but will not be on the same timeframe for his shot.
The WBC are yet to clarify exactly when the Russian will be mandatory, but it is expected he’ll be due around a year from now.
This means the winner of Fury vs Wilder 3 will be free for a voluntary defence or unification bout in 2021.
Fury vs Wilder 3 could happen in December
What are the implications for Tyson Fury vs Anthony Joshua?
Fury and Joshua have agreed financial terms to meet in 2021.
First things first, Fury needs to beat Wilder again and Joshua must overcome Kubrat Pulev.
Now that the WBC mandatory is out of the way, the path is clearing for their undisputed title bout to take place in early 2021 without issue.
However, there is still one obstacle remaining that few are talking about…
Joshua and Fury came face-to-face last month
What about Oleksandr Usyk?
Usyk is the WBO mandatory for Joshua and will be due to get his title shot early next year.
This could interfere with the undisputed status of Fury vs Joshua as AJ may ultimately have to drop the WBO belt.
It is also possible Usyk could accept a step-aside deal or the WBO could rule to allow the undisputed fight to take priority over the mandatory.
Ultimately though, this should not prevent the Fury vs Joshua fight from actually happening.
Usyk wants his title shot
Daniel Dubois vs Ricardo Snijders is live on talkSPORT this Saturday 29 August with coverage starting from 9pm here.