December 20, 2016
December 20, 2016
Tony Bellew

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WHEN you talk about big men you talk about cruiserweight, you talk about heavyweight. At cruiser you can go in there and be cleaned out by one shot. When you talk about big men like that it only takes one shot with those little 10oz gloves on, it only takes one shot to finish a fight. So what do you do? Do you not fight any bangers in the world? We fought Ilunga Makabu, everybody thought Tony Bellew was going to get cleaned out. Makabu was a guy that was knocking out absolutely everybody. This is boxing. Sometimes you’ve got to look at risk versus reward and the reward for this fight, beating David Haye, is absolutely massive.

I understand what everybody’s saying but you’ve got to look at it from our point of view. When was the last time that David Haye looked great in a real fight? It’s a long time ago. Since then he’s not been a fighter, Tony Bellew’s been a fighter. As we see time and time again, sometimes people’s perception of who’s going to be the dominant fighter, who’s going to be the better fighter can get clouded by circumstances. The circumstances of this fight are Tony Bellew can punch, without a shadow of doubt. If Haye can get hurt by people like Lolenga Mock, it’s the same chin. You can say what you want, he’s put on a lot of weight, he’s gone up to heavyweight, whatever. It’s the same chin. He still gets hurt when he gets hit. He’s got this vulnerability about him. If he can get hurt, Bellew can knock him out.

We understand that if Haye lands on Bellew, it’s going to be curtains, same thing. It’s one of those fights. That’s what makes the fight so special, so intriguing but what I’m saying is go back and have a look at the last time Haye looked great in a real fight. Don’t count these last two fights because they’re not real fights. What’s that say to you?

I don’t expect Haye to come in at the same sort of weight. He’ll strip down. In reality anything over 200lbs is a heavyweight fight.

Bellew can fight for 12 rounds. Can David Haye fight for 12 rounds? I don’t think he can go 12 rounds. What happens if it becomes a dog fight? What happens if Haye can’t get him out of there early?

Haye was a tremendous athlete, a great, great cruiserweight and a really good fighter. I’m not talking about the old Haye. We’re now talking about an older Haye. He’s 36 years old. He’s been inactive. You can’t tell me he’s the same man as what he used to be. You can’t tell me he’s the same man he was against Enzo Maccarinelli or people like that or against Mormeck. They’re his best wins really. They’re his most athletic, agile wins.

Let’s just get this real. All these fans out there, all these people that are saying Bellew’s got no chance, he’s going to get squashed in a round, he’s going to get done. They’d say the same if he fights Oleksandr Usyk, they said the same about Makabu. Whoever he fights, the cruiserweight division, it’s a killer division. They’re all bangers. Anybody that’s a banger that fights Bellew, everybody says Bellew’s going to get knocked out. So what? So we’ll fight David Haye. It’s the biggest fight out there. It’s got everybody talking. Everybody’s interested and the people that are going to tune in and watch or the people that are going to come to the venue and watch are going to see something that’s really exciting, a proper exciting fight. However long it lasts, it’s going to be exciting. If you can tell me, hand on heart, if Bellew hits Haye on the chin, on the top of the head, anywhere on his head, with his left hook, his right hand, if you can tell me there won’t be a reaction, then you don’t know boxing.

This article was originally published in Boxing News magazine. Click HERE to subscribe