The 29-year-old Provodnikov (23-2, 16 KOs) most recently exited the squared circle on October 19 after punishing Mike Alvarado to capture the WBO light welterweight belt.
The “Siberian Rocky,” who was controversially outscored by Timothy Bradley in March 2013, is a relentless bruiser who has become more skilled under the tutelage of renowned trainer Freddie Roach.
Supremely confident and in tremendous physical condition, Provodnikov possesses a granite chin, cement fists and his punches land with resounding thuds.
“Brandon Rios is definitely on the top of our list,” Provodnikov manager Vadim Kornilov told World Boxing News. “He is a great fighter and will fight anybody, anywhere and that’s why Ruslan really thinks he deserves the chance.”
Rios (31-2-1, 23 KOs), who once had the audacity to cruelly mock Roach and the tremors that accompany his Parkinson’s disease, lost a lopsided unanimous decision to Manny Pacquiao in November.
Displaying elite footwork and the uncanny ability to deliver punches from all angles, the 34-year-old Pacquiao (55-5-2, 38 KOs) peppered the 27-year-old Rios with brilliant combinations that left “Bam Bam” bruised, cut and swollen.
“Bam Bam” is a ferocious swinger looking to brawl.
Unfortunately for the native Texan, Rios is also sloppy and substandard defensively.
Should the two sluggers meet later this spring, expect Ruslan Provodnikov to capitalize on one of Brandon Rios’ mistakes and knock “Bam Bam” onto Queer Street inside of 10 rounds.