Will Haye Ever Fight A Klitschko?

Posted: July 7, 2010 in Boxing
Tags: , , ,

On August 3rd, 2008 after knocking Enzo Maccarinelli out, WBA title holder David Haye proclaimed in a post fight interview that was just as exciting as the preceding fight,  that he was moving up to heavyweight where he vowed to clean out the garbage and put an end to boring fights and end the era of overweight, over-the-hill contenders.  He vowed to take on all comers and said more than anything he wanted to end Wladimir Klitschko’s reign as Heavyweight Champion of the World.  This news and Haye’s public and entertaining confrontation of Wladimir Klitschko had many boxing fans overly excited and had me elated.  As a fan of knockout artists I had been a casual fan of Haye’s since the Fragomeni fight but it was during that post fight interview with Al Bernstein that turned me into one of Haye’s more ardent supporters.

That was 2008 and my how  things have changed.  In the 2 years since putting the heavyweight division on notice and giving boxing fans something to salivate over, Haye’s had just 3 fights, which from a boxing fans perspective looks horribly unambitious especially for a talented man in his prime.  Rather than doing as promised and disposing of “fat/old bums” and taking on the Klitschko’s, Haye has instead spent his time making excuses, backing out of fights, and taking fights with opponents that truthfully had no business being in the ring with him.  These mismatches came against B and C level fighters all of whom where either well past their prime and/or where never that great to begin with.  This however is the David Haye of 2010, a new man, a business man who consistently looks to the road that poses the least amount of risk and the highest reward.  Some boxing pundits and even fans might argue that boxing is a business and that this is true of all fighters.  While this may or may not be true Haye’ has made a career out of doing as little as possible for as much money as possible and over time, especially as of late, it’s turned the majority of his fan base off.

Haye’s career from the summer of 2008 – present has been plagued by excessive inactivity, excuses, less than spectacular opponents, and talk, talk, and more talk. I found the talking entertaining up until Haye backed out of two fights with the Klitschko’s.  While there may indeed have been “slave” contracts that would have handed control of Haye’s career and money over to the Klitschko’s the manner in which Haye pulled out at the last minute and with excuses looked awfully suspicious.  What I call “Haye’s Syndrome” seems to reoccur prior to and just after a Haye fight.  A long layoff coupled with lots of trash talk and information about a possible opponent is how it begins.  Then after months of additional silence, team Haye announces there’s trouble with negotiations (regardless of opponent) and that a new opponent will need to be found.  A few more months pass and Haye announces an opponent who’s either way past their prime, severely faded, or was never really that good to begin with.  The post fight symptoms of Haye’s Syndrome are talking/hyping up a fight with a Klitschko, trash talking other heavyweights who he’ll never fight, retirement at the age of 31 and of course how he only wants to fight the best.  Haye’s Syndrome is like clockwork and it’s as predictable as time itself.

Haye’s talked extensively about fighting both Klitschko brothers and unifying the division.  For a long time this remained exciting, entertaining, and gave boxing fans something to look forward too…a meaningful and exciting heavyweight championship fight.  Unfortunately the chances we’ll see a  fight with either Klitschko grow smaller and smaller by the day.  For a long time I defended Haye’s decision to back out of his previous supposed fights with the Klitschko’s on the basis that they simply wanted to much control over Haye’s career and money.  Well recent negotiation breakdowns between Haye and Wladimir Klitschko have me rethinking things.  Haye has repeatedly complained that the Klitschko’s where being unfair in negotiations and that he wanted to fight them badly but would do so only if the terms and contracts where fair.  Very recently Haye got what many feel was an extremely fair deal from Wladimir Klitschko.  Apparently the deal was for a 50/50 split on the fight purse with no future contractual obligations to team Klitschko yet Haye’s people now claim this isn’t a fair deal either.  It’s been reported that Haye refused the offer because Klitschko wants to split all the TV revenue 50/50 as well which I believe is more than fair considering Klitschko is the one who’s recognized as the Heavyweight Champion of the World.  Haye’s merely a title holder and the WBA title holder at that.  Given the fact that Haye goes out of his way to call out the Klitschko’s, trash talk them, and repeatedly claim he wants fair options I find the TV revenue to be a suspiciously convenient and trivial matter.

If David Haye really wanted to fight Wladimir he’d make the fight happen.  Even with the WBA strap, Haye’s nothing more than a Heavyweight titlist, he is not, I repeat, not the Heavyweight Champion of the World.  If he so desires to be he must travel down Klitschko Road and beat the number one man in the division.  Haye stands to make much more money fighting a Klitschko than any other fighter as well, even with or without TV revenue’s so again I find it curious that Haye is unwilling to fight.  In fact I believe Haye’s marketability and career are going to suffer as a result of his latest refusal.  Fighting Audley Harrison later this year will be like pouring salt onto an open wound too and isn’t going to do anything good for Haye.

Wladimir Klitschko calls out David Haye

While I used to defend and support Haye, I now find myself in a much different position.  The excuses, long layoffs, weak opponents and talk have gone from entertaining and exciting to old and irritating.  Haye promised to change the heavyweight landscape and bring excitement and athleticism back to the division.  The division has seen no change and the excitement we’ve seen has had little to do with Haye.  The outcome of the fight against Barrett was predictable, the Valuev fight was boring and I thought Valuev won by 2 rounds, and the Ruiz fight was nothing more than a gross mismatch cooked up by boxing politics.  I’ve been a boxing fan for nearly 30 years and in that time I’ve seen fighters drop belts and titles to make fights happen.  I’ve seen fighters accept what many would consider questionable terms and contracts in order to get a fight they want to move ahead.  I’ve also seen fighters work aggressive to secure the best opponent possible and to fight as often as possible.  Some I’m left wondering, what’s Haye’s excuse?  What’s the holdup?  What the real reason Haye won’t fight a Klitschko (in this case Wladimir)?

Could there be other details about the proposed 50/50 deal team Klitschko made that we just don’t know about?  There certainly could be but Haye’s silence on the matter speaker volumes and makes me look at Haye in a whole other light.  Wladimir even went so far as to make a video publicly calling David Haye out, a calling I might add that the biggest mouth in boxing completely ignored.  Months have gone by now and there’s still no response to that video which also adds to my suspicions that Haye wants nothing to do with either Klitschko.  While I don’t for a second believe David is afraid to fight them or anyone for that matter, I do believe that the David Haye of 2010 is more of a business man than a fighter and is looking to milk his WBA title for all it’s worth.  I believe he’ll then retire at the end of 2011 having never fought either Wladimir or Vitali though he will continue to claim that he accomplished great things in the division and was the heavyweight champion of the world.  I know see Haye as a man who wants to take less risk than he’s ever taken before in every one of his fights.  Should he take a fight with a Klitschko and lose his career is, for all intensive purposes, over. Although he would stand to make a large sum of money from just one Klitschko fight, he’ll take the easy road and fight unqualified opponents for less money to ensure that his winning streak continues.

Many will disagree with me but I see Haye beating both Klitschko’s.  He’s faster and hits harder than both of them.  Vitali is great but has looked old as of late and I don’t believe Wladimir will be able to weather Haye’s aggression, should he bring it to the fight that night. Haye wants to retire at the age of 31 and as the unified heavyweight champion (or so he says).  Well Haye had better get a move on.  He’ll be 30 in just a few short months and both Wladimir and Vitali are tied up with opponents this fall.  That means Haye has two choices, remain inactive for the remainder of the  year, or fight another overrated bum.  My money is on inactivity though I won’t be surprised to see a fight with Harrison made very soon.  Haye brings excitement when he actually fights but he no longer fights the best and would rather spend his time making one excuse after another.  Shit or get off the pot David!  You claim the Klitschko’s are boring and bad for boxing but it’s now become a case of the pot calling the kettle black.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s