DAVID HAYE will donate 10 per cent of the ticket sales from his fight against Arnold Gjergjaj on May 21 to Nick Blackwell, who remains in an induced coma after his loss to Chris Eubank Jr on Saturday night.
Blackwell collapsed in the ring after being stopped in the 10th round against Eubank Jr at the Wembley Arena and was immediately rushed to hospital, where he was put under sedation to reduce the swelling to his brain.
In a wonderful gesture, Haye today announced he will donate the money to Nick – who is unlikely to be able to box again – and his family.
“There was an amazing fight that happened on Saturday night between Chris Eubank Jr and Nick Blackwell, watched by millions, but I’m sure everyone is aware of the very unfortunate circumstances surrounding Nick Blackwell’s health, he’s unfortunately been induced into a coma,” Haye said.
“It really left a bitter taste in my mouth. What should have been a brilliant night for British boxing has got some people talking about whether boxing should be banned or not.
“Everybody wishes Nick Blackwell a speedy recovery and I think it’s pretty clear that when he comes round, I feel he will come back to full health, but it seems clear his competitive boxing career is most likely over.
“With that being said, as a gesture of good will I am going to donate 10% of the money that I receive from ticket sales to donate to Nick Blackwell because possibly his fight with Eubank could be his last paycheck.
“If I had to stop boxing at 25, I would have had to train in something completely new to feed my family. He’s only in this situation because he’s so tough and he’s got such a big heart, because he’s what British boxing wants in its fighters, someone who goes out there and puts it all on the line. I’d like to wish him and his family all the best.”
Speaking about his next opponent, who is all but anonymous and ranked poorly by the sport’s governing bodies, Haye claims he should provide decent preparation for the division’s big guns.
“It feels good to be back. What I said from the start is I want to fight regularly, get some momentum going and expose boxing to the masses,” he continued.
“I wanted to get an opponent who is a) bigger than me b) undefeated and c) is fast and can move. If you look at the top guys in the division, Deontay Wilder, Tyson Fury and hopefully Anthony Joshua, they’re all taller than me. So I wanted an opponent who was taller than me who would get me punching up. I’ve got him, ‘The Cobra’.
“It’s hard to get to 29-0, there are no big names on there [his record] though. The same was said of [Giacobbe] Fragomeni when I fought him back at cruiserweight and he gave me one of my toughest fights.
“I’m speaking to a number of terrestrial television networks to screen this fight. My plan is to bring boxing back to the masses.”