When Eddie Hearn branched out to America, opening Matchroom USA, he stated that finding exciting young American talent would be top of the agenda. Enter Nikita ‘White Chocolate’ Ababiy, 3-0 (3), who after three fights in his native country makes the trip across the pond to test out his skills in front of British boxing fans at The o2 Arena on Saturday.
The former Team USA member was one of three debutantes signed to Matchroom (Ababiy was signed alongside Nkosi Solomon and Reshat Mati in 2018) and once made official, Ababiy admitted he was fully focused on making the Olympics, but after discussing the opportunity with his coaches, the offer given to him by “Eddie Hearns” (common mistake from the US fans) was too good to pass up. Nikita went pro and made his debut in Chicago on June 10th 2018 scoring a dominant first round knockout.
This was followed by two more finishes setting up his April 20th UK debut with the expectation he continues this run. Open about his style being unpredictable and wild, Ababiy has said he doesn’t want to box like “the norm” and with the help of his coaches at the NY Atlas Cop And Kids Boxing Gym, he knows he is around the right people when it comes to building up young boxers. The gym itself was featured on the 2017 Netflix documentary ‘Counterpunch’ where Atlas alum Chris ‘Lil B-Hop’ Colbert, 10-0 (3), made his own journey from successful amateur to hungry professional signing with Al Haymon and making his pro debut in the film.
Walking into the gym as a teenager, the now 20-year-old Middleweight was the minority in the predominantly black and Hispanic surroundings, he given the nickname White Cholocate by his coaches and teammates due to his self proclaimed ‘rhythm and flow’; two things he has brought with him to his professional career. In just three bouts Ababiy has generated talk among the fans and media with his ferocious and unique punching style that generates immense power.
On Saturday he goes up a level in his game, flying to London fighting at the o2 Arena alongside young British talents such as Josh Kelly, Shannon Courtenay, Joe Cordina and Conor Benn as well as veteran brawler Derek Chisora and fan favourite David Allen topping the card.
Ababiy has caught the attention of the US crowd and on Saturday he has the chance to make a statement to the UK that he is one to watch out for in the future as the fans spectate ‘The White Rhino’ ‘Pretty-Boy’ and now ‘White Chocolate’ respectively.
Matchroom presents Allen vs Brown & Chisora vs Gashi on Saturday, April 20th at the o2 Arena, London. Full card below