The Heavyweight division is beginning to heat up
(Photo credit: Tom Casino/Showtime) By Dallas Orysiuk: At one point, being the heavyweight champion of the world was the greatest achievements in sports. The heavyweight division in boxing has been a residence for greats like Muhammad Ali, George Foreman, Joe Frazier, Rocky Marciano, Jack Dempsey, Evander Holyfield, and Mike Tyson. But now the lower weight classes receive greater glorification and attention, and the majority of American heavyweights chose football or basketball instead. And in recent years, the heavyweight division has been one of the most boring divisions in boxing, and if you were suffering from insomnia, watching a heavyweight clash could be the cure.
The heavyweight division has lacked action, competition and characters for a while. And one problem is that lots of heavyweight fighters are coming from Europe and many match ups are not televised on American television. There are some good match ups coming up, but to watch them most North Americans will have to stream them online. This is a major problem with today’s heavyweight division. The fights are occurring across the globe and very few of these fights are televised on HBO and Showtime. Not only that, but the fighters are all from countries of different origin, asides from a few, and this makes it difficult to get rivalries going.
However, regardless of these hurdles and international barriers there is hope, because lately it seems that the heavyweight division is beginning to heat up. We may not have the Ali’s, Foreman’s and Tyson’s, but there is some hype and buzz that should be generated in the months to come. There are many upcoming fights that should be exciting, and hopefully they are a start to an emerging and international heavyweight division. Once the dust settles, there will be some even better matchups with the winners of the upcoming fights.
Let’s take a look and listen to the noise which is beginning to surface in the heavyweight division.
Although he has faced nothing but senior citizens and tomato cans, Deontay Wilder is something to be excited about. Wilder has destroyed every single one of his opponents and is 29-0 with 29 KOs. The former bronze Olympian is 6’8” and packs a mean right hand. Every time his right lands opponents crumble. The longest anyone has lasted with Wilder is 4 rounds. Is Deontay Wilder the next great American hope for a dominant heavyweight champion? Hopefully he begins to step his competition up and fight somebody with a pulse.
Tony Thompson vs. Kubrat Pulev (August 24th)
Tony Thompson (38-3, 26 KOs) is up there in age, but is always a game fighter. Most recently, Thompson destroyed the previously unbeaten and heavily hyped David Price by way of 2nd and 5th round TKOs. In Both fights Thompson came in as the underdog. Now the next test for the veteran will be against Bulgaria’s undefeated and highly ranked Kubrat Pulev. Pulev (17-0, 9 KOs) has been considered a talented fighter and this fight will be a sure test for him to see if he can hang with the big boys in the heavyweight division.
Seth Mitchell vs. Chris Arreola (September 6th)
A matchup that is sure to be fireworks will be Seth Mitchell (26-1-1, 19 KOs) vs. Chris Arreola (35-3, 30 KOs). At one point both fighters were considered to be up and coming fighters to take the heavyweight division by storm. But then both fighters suffered setbacks. Mitchell was upset and knocked out by Jonathon Banks in two rounds. Meanwhile Arreola suffered defeats to Vitali Klitschko, Tomasz Adamek and Bermane Stiverne. Prior to the Stiverne fight Arreola had won his last 7, 5 coming by way of knockout. In the Stiverne fight Arreola showed tremendous heart, fighting with a broken nose and making the fight competitive and entertaining throughout. In Mitchell’s last fight he avenged his only defeat to Jonathon Banks.
What makes this match up even more intriguing is that there is the strong possibility that Deontay Wilder will finally step up and face the winner.
Derek Chisora vs. TBA (September 21st)
Derek Chisora (17-4, 11 KOs) is not the best fighter in the world, but he is a vibrant character. Known mostly for spitting in Wladamir Klitschko’s face, putting up a good fight against Vitali Klitschko and getting into a brawl with David Haye, yelling “I’m going to shoot David Haye,” Chisora always brings drama to the table. Derek Chisora will never be dominant, but will always give a good fight He has won his last two and comes off a victory of previously unbeaten American Malik Scott. With his antics, Chisora is the kind of character that the heavyweight division has been lacking for quite some time; he adds entertainment and hype to a division which lacks characters.
Wladamir Klitschko vs. Alexander Povetkin (October 5th)
The number one fighter in the heavyweight division, RING, IBF, WBO and WBA champion is Wladimir Klitschko (60-3, 51 KOs) and he has been dominant for years. In the fall Wladamir takes on the RING magazines number 3 ranked and unbeaten fighter Alexander Povetkin (26-0, 18 KOs). The fight will likely be a victory for Klitschko, but the undefeated Russian, Povetkin has some good wins and this matchup carries some intrigue.
David Haye vs. Tyson Fury (September 28th)
Finally, the most exciting match up of them all is an all domestic UK showdown between David Haye (26-2, 24 KOs) and Tyson Fury (21-0, 15 KOs). Both fighters are known for their antics, and both fighters entertaining inside and out of the ring. David Haye has a mouth on him and it was on display when he talked his way into a fight with Wladamir Klitschko, verbally assaulting him to the point that it got too far. Later on Haye got into a brawl with Derek Chisora which led to a match up between the two.
Tyson Fury is no stranger to trash talk, as he is infamous for his trash talk on twitter, insulting, and calling out boxers and UFC fighters. He has quite the personality and it showed when he grabbed the microphone and sung following his victory against Steve Cunningham. Fury is 6’9” and undefeated; he has some good victories but has a questionable chin, which is why this matchup is so interesting. David Haye is the favorite, but is much smaller. However fighting guys with height isn’t uncommon to Haye as he defeated the 7 foot Nikolai Valuev and lost to the 6’6” Wladamir Klitshcko. Fury has the size and confidence, while Haye has the speed and power. This matchup will be a good one, and tops the list of must watch heavyweight bouts coming up.
These match ups are all interesting. Some may turn out to be boring, but they are all offer intrigue. The outcome of each fight will play a huge role on what happens in the emerging heavyweight division in boxing. While some may be boring, many of them will be exciting and surrounded in hype. It will be interesting to see how these match ups play out and what will happen with the winners and the losers. Who will face who? Who will become the heir to the thrown taking over for the aging Klitschko’s? And will America begin to dominate heavyweight boxing once again?