The heavyweight division has been boring as fuck for the better part of a decade.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a lifelong fan of boxing, but in all honesty; I kind of got the shaft when it came to the talent pool of my generation’s heavyweight division.
Truth be told, I think watching Joe Mesi awkwardly stumble upwards to the upper eschelons of the division was probably my biggest heavyweight thrill of the 2000’s.
Many find their safety first, and consumately European style of boxing to be boring, and therefore a liability to the sport; however personally, I respect their abilities.
In my eyes, Vitali proved his worth by giving Lennox Lewis one of the toughest fights of his career, as well as through his somewhat miraculous comeback after a 5 year lay-off.
Wladimir doesn’t really have any tooth and nail, career defining fights on his resume like his brother, however I feel that’s to his credit.
As boring as Wladimir can be, his consistency is to be commended.
In a sport in which so much of the proceedings are determined by mental toughness and sharpness of reflexes, “consistency” is an adjective that is reserved for only the very best.
That being said, Wladimir’s biggest liability has always been the supposition that he has a shoddy chin, largely due to the fact that his only losses (3 in total) have been the result of being laid out cold from a single punch.
That doesn’t change the fact that he has a phenomenal reach, an incredible jab, and one of the most devastating right hands in the business.
Oh yeah, and he’s got Emmanuel Steward in his corner. That counts for A LOT.
Well, when Klitschko decides to listen to him anyway…
Tomorrow night, Wladimir Klitschko will fight David Haye in what many are calling “the only fight that matters in the heavyweight division.”
Let me just say, the lead-up to this fight has been unbelievable.
For those who are unaware, after claiming the Cruiserweight championship from Jean-Marc Mormeck in 2007, David Haye immediately moved up to the heavyweight division (at 6′ 3″, one could argue this was his natural weight) and claimed the WBA title from Russian giant Nikolai Valuev in 2009.
Having secured his place in the division by gaining the WBA strap, Haye issued a challenge to both of the Klitschko brothers, ultimately gaining a date with Wladimir.
During the promotion of the fight, Haye showed up to a press conference wearing a t-shirt emblazoned with a graphic depicting him standing over the 2 brother’s decapitated corpses:
Typically a very calm individual, Wladimir reacted to this with noticeable anger.
Despite the juicy promotion, Haye eventually pulled out of the fight, citing a back injury.
It’s been 2 years since that promotional fiasco, and now we’re finally getting the fight we’ve all been waiting for.
While I know Klitschko stands as a symbol of stagnation for the heavyweight division, in all honesty I think I’m going to be rooting for him.
Call me old-fashioned, but if you ask me; David Haye talks too much for his own good.
He’s a very talented fighter, good enough to have become the guy at cruiserweight; but his arrogance doesn’t hold up to the quality of his resume.
In all honesty though, this fight is a hard one to call.
Both have clear weaknesses and strengths, it’s just a matter of who can exploit their opponent better.
Klitschko has a suspect chin and might be too robotic to contend with a lot of lateral movement.
At the same time however, he has excellent fundamentals, a reach advantage, as well as an overall size and strength advantage.
Haye is known to have stamina issues and hasn’t faced the same level of competition as Klitschko.
At the same time however, he is incredibly fleet of foot and hand and is excellent at punching from dangerous angles.
If Klitschko’s chin comes into play, I could definitely see Haye putting him down with a right over-the-top.
If Haye’s stamina or focus lapse at any time, then I could definitely see Klitschko sweeping the whole 12 rounds.
It’s an either or kind of fight, but for my money; I’m going with the big Ukranian.
In any case, here’s hoping the fight doesn’t suck, as like I said; it’s kind of a big deal….