Newly-crowned WBO light-welterweight champion Ruslan Provodnikov has expressed his delight at now being able to have more say over his opponents following his stunning victory of Mike Alvarado last month.
The hard-hitting Russian, who wore down Alvarado in ten rounds to win his first world title in Colorado, revealed to WBN that he still finds it hard to believe that he is in possession of a recognised belt, but is ready to defend it against the best upon his return.
“I don’t really realize that I’m the world champion most of the time, sometimes I will catch myself with the thought that I am a world champion and it feels great,” explained the humble Provodnikov.
“Winning this title feels great, I’m very glad because now I can fight the best and choose the best fighters in the world. This victory has opened a lot of doors for us.”
The 29 year-old is already being linked with a possible rematch with Timothy Bradley at welterweight after the pair shared a gruelling twelve round battle in March, with Provodnikov having no qualms about fighting anywhere between 140 and 147lbs.
“I am open to all the best contenders in the world!” Provodnikov exclaimed. “As I always said I’m only here to fight the best.
“I would love to fight Marquez, but I am also ready for a Bradley rematch and if Mayweather fought me I think it would be a great fight.
“Danny Garcia is another great fighter who I think we could have a war with and if I was offered that fight today I would say; ‘I’m ready!’
“Another would be (Lucas) Matthusse as he is a great fighter, and if it is to happen I’m ready to fight him and I know it would be a very exciting fight for the fans.”
High profile match-ups with Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather would certainly not be a million miles away for Provodnikov in this form, although the ‘Siberian Rocky’ was more tentative when speaking of a clash with his Filipino Wild Card stablemate.
“Manny Paquiao is my friend and we have the same trainer, but of course I wouldn’t back down from any challenge,” he stated.
“I’m open to fighting the best and that includes Pacquiao, Garcia, Bradley or even Mayweather. I know I could give Mayweather problems as the way I fight is in my character and it was absorbed with my mother’s milk.
“I don’t think I can change my style of fighting and would approach any fight with Floyd as I always do.”
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