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Epix will return to the boxing ring next month by televising and streaming online three heavyweight championship fights — two featuring the imposing Klitschko brothers — on consecutive Saturdays starting Feb. 18.
First, Vitali Klitschko will defend his World Boxing Council title against Dereck Chisora of London in Munich. Then, undefeated Alexander Povetkin of Russia will look to keep his World Boxing Association belt from Marco Huck, a German cruiserweight who is moving up in weight, in a Feb. 25 bout from Stuttgart, Germany.
And on March 3 in Dusseldorf, Germany, Wladimir Klitschko, who holds the World Boxing Organization, International Boxing Federation and WBA (super) heavyweight crowns, will face Frenchman Jean Marc Mormeck, another cruiserweight champ moving up.
EpixHD.com will stream the bouts live as part of a free trial offer.
Epix, a joint venture of Viacom, MGM and Lionsgate, is available in more than 30 million homes on cable, video-on-demand and online through distribution partners that include Verizon FIOS, Charter Communications, Dish Network and Cox Communications.
Epix offered live U.S. telecasts of Vitali Klitschko and Povetkin title fights last year, with the Klitschko one-rounder in March drawing more than 100,000 visitors to its website, according to Epix chief of staff Nora Ryan.
Epix takes the raw feed from Europe (a local shoot provided by the promoter) and produces a show with its own announcers working from a New York studio. Ryan would not divulge how much the company is paying for boxing rights but called the initiative “a great investment.”
The Klitschko brothers are natives of Kiev, Ukraine who fight out of Germany. Vitali has a record of 43-2 with 40 knockouts; Wladimir is 56-3 with 49 KOs.
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