Oleksandr Gvozdyk

Weightclass: Light Heavyweight

  • 16wins

  • 0losses

  • 0draws

  • 13kos

AGE:
31
Birthplace:
Kharkiv, Ukraine
Height:
6’2.5”
reach:
75.5"
Managers:
Egis Klimas (Boxing Writers Association of America “Manager of the Year” in 2016 and 2017)
Trainers:
Teddy Atlas

fighter feed

Oleksandr "The Nail" Gvozdyk

At the age of 31, Oleksandr – his friends call him Alex – is a four-year pro. The WBC light heavyweight world champion, he was an elite amateur at the international level before his debut and a bronze medalist at the 2012 Olympic Games. His teammates on the powerhouse Ukrainian Olympic team that year included featherweight gold medalist Vasiliy Lomachenko and heavyweight gold medalist Aleksandr Usyk – both of whom are his close friends – light welterweight silver medalist Denys Berinchyk, and welterweight bronze medalist Taras Shelestyuk. Oleksandr was also 9-0 with 3 knockouts in AIBA’s World Series of Boxing fights over the last 1 ½ years of his amateur career.

As a professional, he is a stablemate of rising superstars Lomachenko – a three-division world champion and the Boxing Writers Association of America’s “2017 Fighter of the Year” – and Usyk, the undisputed cruiserweight world champion, as well as former two-time light heavyweight world champion Sergey Kovalev and several upcoming prospects. All are managed by Egis Klimas, the Boxing Writers Association of America’s “Manager of the Year” in 2016 and 2017.

Oleksandr has now joined Lomachenko and Usyk as a reigning world champion – in his last fight on December 1 in Quebec City, Quebec, he won the WBC light heavyweight world title with a sensational 11th-round knockout against defending champion Adonis Stevenson.

Boxingscene.com’s Lem Satterfield reported [excerpts]: Oleksandr Gvozdyk trailed on two of the three judges’ cards when he secured his 11th-round knockout of southpaw WBC light heavyweight champion Adonis Stevenson before “Superman’s” stunned partisan fans at Centre Videotron.

Gvozdyk already had overcome a third-round no-call by referee Michael Griffin from a right hand seconds into the period that was ruled a slip, as well as being wobbled by a hard, 10th-round left cross that sent him reeling with only the ropes holding him up.

In addition, however, the 2012 Ukrainian Olympic bronze medalist also trailed, 98-92, and, 96-94, on the cards of Jack Woodburn and Guido Cavalleri, with Mike Ross having it a draw at 95-95 before Griffin rescued a helpless Stevenson crumpled in a neutral corner at the 2:49 mark.

Gvozdyk earned his ninth knockout in 10 fights to dethrone the 41-year-old Stevenson (29-2-1, 24 KOs), who entered as boxing’s oldest and longest reigning champion with nearly 5 ½-year championship supremacy.

Gvozdyk’s right hand finished the fight-ending, 10-punch barrage, sinking Stevenson down the ropes and to his backside. The knockout ended the 10th title defense during a run that includes six stoppages for Stevenson.

Gvozdyk had earned the WBC’s interim crown in March with a unanimous decision over Mehdi Amar to become Stevenson’s mandatory challenger.

Known for his left-handed “Superman punch,” Stevenson had gone 16-0-1 with 14 KOs since his lone loss in April 2010 that he avenged by sixth-round KO in March 2013. Stevenson entered at 9-0-1 with seven KOs in championship bouts…. [End Satterfield item]

In his post-fight interview, Oleksandr said, “This win means everything to me. I’ve trained my whole life for this and tonight, all of the hard work was worth it. Having Teddy Atlas in my corner was a huge help. He knew exactly what to say to me. We trained so well for this fight, and I knew I was going to get the knockout. Adonis was a great champion, but it’s my time, now. I’m ready for anybody else in the division.”

Stevenson was taken to the hospital in critical condition after the fight, but recent reports indicate his condition is stable and improving.

In earlier interviews, Oleksandr said, “Lomachenko is my good friend. We were together on amateur team. I met him first like, maybe 2004. I start to be a friend since maybe only 2009 – when I start to be member of Olympic team, we start to be friends. We were on team together until Olympic Games, 2012, and then we were together one season of World Series of Boxing until 2013. After the series, we both signed with Top Rank.

“Lomachenko has training camps in Oxnard, always in the same gym, and I always join to him to train together. His father used to train me in amateur – he was not like, my official trainer, but he always was helping me and we always trained together. He helps me now in camp, too.

“It’s very good having Lomachenko here in Oxnard. It’s good memory, you know, like when we were amateurs together having a training camp, making preparations for Olympic Games or World Championships. Now it’s like it’s come back again and we’re all together again. It’s very interesting and very exciting. We even meet in Ukraine because we’re living in different cities. But here, we’re all together, so we spend all of our leisure time together – holidays and weekends, always together. I still don’t have a lot of friends, like native Americans, here.”

“I try to always stay in shape – I never stop training. When I rest, I try to do some like, morning warm-up, some little exercises, or ride bicycle. I try to do something always.

“I was born in Soviet Union, where Alexander is common name. But in Ukrainian translation of Alexander, it’s Oleksandr. It’s pronounced like Alexander – everybody calls me Alex. In Ukraine, one half of people speak Ukrainian and one half, in eastern part, speak Russian. I am from eastern part and speak Russian when I’m in Ukraine. Officially, in my passport, I’m Oleksandr – with ‘o’ – but speaking, I’m Alexander. My last name is pronounced – the ‘g’ is not silent, but almost silent.

“My nickname is ‘The Nail,’ like the tool to join something, not like on the finger. The exact translation of my last name from Russian is ‘nail.’ ”

AMATEUR, PERSONAL BACKGROUND: Oleksandr said, “I was born in Kharkiv, Ukraine. I’m the only kid in my family. My father was a driver, but he doesn’t work now. My mother is dead already – she passed away couple of years ago. My father was boxer, but he was not like a big boxer, nothing serious. He was training for like, a couple of years and his best result, he was like, champion of our city – amateur boxer. He had like, 15 or 20 fights. It was junior championships at school. He’s just a big fan of boxing.

“I was 10 years old when I started boxing. My classmate in the school, he start boxing first and then he invite me. He was my friend, he said, ‘Okay, let’s go. I just enrolled in the boxing school. Let’s go together. It will be fun.’ That’s it. I just go to boxing. I didn’t follow some dream to be Olympic champion or world champion. I just go to boxing school to be stronger on the street – to be able to protect myself. And then, after a couple of years, I’m realize my dreams to be champion.

“I don’t remember exactly, but I had about 250 amateur fights – maybe 255 fights, 30 losses.

“I’m naturally right-handed. I speak Ukrainian and Russian perfectly, and a little bit English.”…

Oleksandr and his wife, Daria, have two sons and a daughter…

AMATEUR HIGHLIGHTS:

2013 SUMMER UNIVERSIADE – Kazan, Russia, 178 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in his first fight on 7-7-13 he won a 3-0 decision against Ainar Karlson of Estonia; in the quarterfinals on 7-8-13 he stopped Hyeong-Kyu Kim of Korea in the 3rd round; in the semifinals on 7-9-13 he won a 3-0 decision against Mikhail Dauhaliavets of Bulgaria; in the finals on 7-10-13 he won by walkover against Dmitriy Bivol of Russia…

2013 WORLD SERIES OF BOXING – on 5-11-13 in Astana, Kazakhstan, he won by TKO (3rd round) against Ehsan Rozbahani of Iran…on 4-19-13 in Kiev, Ukraine, he won a 5 round split decision against Abdelhafid Benchabla of Algeria…on 3-23-13 in Kiev, Ukraine, he won by knockout (5th round) against Vladimir Cheles of Moldavia…on 2-8-13 in Brovary, Ukraine, he won a 5 round unanimous decision against Vitalijus Subacius of Lithuania…on 1-11-13 in Kiev, Ukraine, he won a 5 round unanimous decision against Babacar Kamara of Sweden…

2012 OLYMPIC GAMES – London, England, 178 pounds – BRONZE MEDALIST: in his first fight on 7-30-12 he won an 18-10 decision against Mikhail Dauhaliavets of Bulgaria; in his second fight on 8-4-12 he won an 18-6 decision against Osman Bravo of Nicaragua; in the quarterfinals on 8-8-12 he won a 19-17 decision against Abdelhafid Benchebla of Algeria; in the semifinals on 8-10-12 he had a 13-13 draw, but lost the tiebreaker against Adilet Niyazimbetov of Kazakhstan…

2012 WORLD SERIES OF BOXING: on 5-2-12 in London, England, he won a 5 round unanimous decision against Imre Szellő of Hungary…on 3-30-12 in Baku, Azerbaijan, he won a 5 round unanimous decision against Abdelhafid Benchebla of Algeria…on 2-17-12 in Moscow, Russia, he won a 5 round unanimous decision against Ludovic Groguhe of France…

2011 WORLD SERIES OF BOXING: on 12-9-11 in Almaty, Kazakhstan, he won by TKO (3rd round) against Daniyar Ustembayev of Kazakhstan; Oleksandr was cut over his left eye…

2011 EUBC EUROPEAN CUP – Kharkov, Ukraine, 178 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in the semifinals (his first fight) on 10-22-10 he won a 10-3 decision against Pavel Bykov of Russia; in the finals on 10-23-10 he stopped Ainar Karlson of Estonia in the 3rd round…

2011 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS – Baku, Azerbaijan, 178 pounds: in his first fight on 9-28-11 he stopped Jovan Young of Jamaica in the 1st round; in his second fight on 10-2-11 he won a 25-11 decision against Imre Szello of Hungary; in his third fight on 10-4-11 he won a 17-15 decision against Ramil Aliyev of Azerbaijan; in the quarterfinals on 10-5-11 he lost a 27-21 decision against Egor Mekhontsev of Russia…

2011 MAKAR MAZAY MEMORIAL – Mariupol, Ukraine, 178 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in the quarterfinals (his first fight) on 7-6-11 he stopped Andrei Sari of Moldavia in the 1st round; in the semifinals on 7-8-11 he won a 20-13 decision against Nikolay Afanasiadi of Ukraine; in the finals on 7-9-11 he won by walkover against Elshod Rasulov of Uzbekistan…

2011 NURMAGAMBETOV MEMORIAL – Almaty, Kazakhstan, 178 pounds – BRONZE MEDALIST: in his first fight on 5-10-11 he stopped Gafurov of Uzbekistan in the 1st round; in the quarterfinals on 5-11-11 he won a 13-6 decision against Levan Guledani of Republic of Georgia; in the semifinals on 5-13-11 he lost by walkover against Anton Pinchuk of Kazakhstan…

2011 UKRAINIAN NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS – Kharkov, Ukraine, 178 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in his first fight on 3-23-11 he stopped Evgen Grigorenko in the 2nd round; in the quarterfinals on 3-24-11 he won an 11-0 decision against Sergiy Lapin; in the semifinals on 3-26-11 he won an 11-5 decision against Enver Tuktarov; in the finals on 3-27-11 he won a 10-7 decision against Dmitro Buglakov

2010 FOUR NATIONS TOURNAMENT – Berck-sur-Mer, France, 178 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in the semifinals (his first fight) on 11-26-10 he won a 6-1 decision against Kevin Buval of France; in the finals on 11-27-10 he won a 4-2 decision against Jeffrey Spencer of the United States…

2010 EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIPS – Moscow, Russia, 178 pounds: in his first fight on 6-5-10 he stopped Gottlieb Weiss of Germany in the 2nd round; in his second fight on 6-6-10 he lost an 8-5 decision against Ainar Karlson of Estonia…

2010 UKRAINIAN NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS – Sumy, Ukraine, 178 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in his first fight on 2-9-10 he defeated Olexandr Babanov (no result reported); in the quarterfinals on 2-10-10 he won a 5-0 decision against Andriy Zelenyak; in the semifinals on 2-12-10 he won a 3-0 decision against Sergiy Lapin; in the finals on 2-14-10 he won a 6-5 decision against Ivan Senay

2009 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS – Milan, Italy, 178 pounds: in his first fight on 9-4-09 he won a 14-6 decision against Nikolajs Grisunins of Latvia; in his second fight on 9-6-89 he stopped Assane Faye of Senegal in the 3rd round; in his third fight on 9-7-09 he had a 2-2 draw, but lost the tiebreaker against Rene Krause of Germany…

2009 AHMET COMERT TOURNAMENT – Istanbul, Turkey, 178 pounds: in his first fight on 4-15-09 he was stopped in the 2nd round against Artur Beterbiev of Russia…

2009 UKRAINIAN NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS – Kryvyi Rih, Ukraine, 178 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in his first fight on 3-17-09 he stopped Olexandr Babanov in the 2nd round; in the quarterfinals on 3-19-09 he stopped Vitaliy Merinov (no round reported); in the semifinals on 3-20-09 he won a 12-4 decision against Dmytro Smagula; in the finals on 3-22-09 he won a 12-3 decision against Vyacheslav Shabranskyy

2008 WORLD UNIVERSITY CHAMPIONSHIPS – Kazan, Russia, 178 pounds – GOLD MEDALIST: in the quarterfinals (his first fight) on 9-22-08 he stopped Don Shange of South Africa in the 1st round; in the semifinals on 9-25-08 he won an 11-7 decision against Sergey Korneyev of Belarus; in the finals on 9-27-08 he won a 14-6 decision against Daniyar Ustembayev of Kazakhstan…

STRENGTHS: Has good skills and movement…has good punching power, a good body puncher…is experienced against top opposition…had a very strong amateur background…

PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE: 16 fights…83 total rounds…11 world championship rounds…12 interim world title rounds…

AVERAGE LENGTH OF BOUTS: 5.1rounds…

KNOCKOUT PERCENTAGE: 81%…

DISTANCE FIGHTS: 12 rounds – 1 (1-0)…11 rounds – 1 (1-0)…10 rounds – 0…

fight history

  • 2012

    On 5-2-12 in London, ENG, he won a 5 round unanimous decision against Imre Szellő of Hungary.

    On 3-30-12 in Baku, AZER, he won a 5 round unanimous decision against Abdelhafid Benchebla of Algeria.

    On 2-17-12 in Moscow, RUS, he won a 5 round unanimous decision against Ludovic Groguhe of France.

    On 12-9-11 in Almaty, KAZ, he won by TKO (3rd round) against Daniyar Ustembayev of Kazakhstan; Oleksandr was cut over his left eye.

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  • 2013

    On 5-11-13 in Astana, KAZ, he won by TKO (3rd round) against Ehsan Rozbahani of Iran.

    On 4-19-13 in Kiev, UKR, he won a 5 round split decision against Abdelhafid Benchabla of Algeria.

    On 3-23-13 in Kiev he won by knockout (5th round) against Vladimir Cheles of Moldavia.

    On 2-8-13 in Brovary, UKR, he won a 5 round unanimous decision against Vitalijus Subacius of Lithuania.

    On 1-11-13 in Kiev he won a 5 round unanimous decision against Babacar Kamara of Sweden.

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  • 2014

    On 11-15-14 in San Antonio, TX, he won by TKO (6th round, 1:51) against 37 year-old Otis Griffin (24-17-2): the scheduled 8-rounder.

    On 9-20-14 in Phoenix, AZ, he won by knockout (5th round, 1:38) against Lamont Williams (5-5-1): the scheduled 6-rounder was on the undercard at the Celebrity Theater.

    On 5-17-14 in Fresno, CA, he won a 6 round unanimous decision against 35 year-old Michael Gbenga (19-12): scored 60-54 on all three scorecards.

    He debuted at the age of 26 on 4-12-14 in Las Vegas and won by knockout (1st round, 2:55) against Michael Montoya (5-2-1): the scheduled 6-rounder was on the undercard of the Manny Pacquiao-Timothy Bradley Jr. main event.

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