Wladimir: “I will knock him [Haye] out if he has the courage to fight me”
By William Mackay: IBF/WBO heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko plans on making World Boxing Association heavyweight champion David Haye suffer when and if they are able to agree to financial terms during their negotiations for a unification bout. In an article at ESPN, Wladimir said “I want to enjoy punishing him [Haye] for 12 rounds and then knock him out at the last moment. I promise you, I will knock him out if he has the courage to fight me. It’s not sadistic, it’s just a wish. I really don’t like anything about him. He lies, he’s sneaky, but this is a personal issue for me. I don’t like him.” I’ve never seen Wladimir so upset about a fighter before during his career.
Klitschko usually stays composed and under control of his emotions rather than making promises of pain and suffering for his opponents. But it looks as if Haye has really upset Wladimir with his constant taunting to the point where Wladimir is now making promises of pain for Haye. This is obviously what Haye wanted, because he’s getting attention from the best heavyweight in the division, and without his constant taunting of the younger Klitschko brother, he would probably be ignored by Wladimir.
Without the talk from Haye, there’s nothing he’s really done in the ring to give the impression that he would do anything other than to get knocked out if he were to fight Wladimir. Haye looked bad in beating WBA heavyweight champion Nikolay Valuev last year by a 12 round majority decision last November. Haye had two excuses for looking so bad: 1. He said he injured his right hand early in the fight. 2. Haye said it was his plan to box and move Valuev all night long. From what I saw of the fight, Haye looked plain scared of getting hit by Valuev and was only able to throw a scarce punch every now and then.
Haye had a chance to fight Wladimir a year ago, but after talking trash for weeks in the build up to the fight, Haye suffered a back injury and the fight didn’t happen. Haye never lost interest in fighting Klitschko, continuing to make commentary from Britain and critiquing Wladimir’s fights, despite looking far worse in his fight with Valuev. Wladimir, still speaking about Haye, said “He lied about his injury. He lied to the last moment and pulled out of the fight with my brother to take the Valuev fight. I want him to fight me, to be a man. I wish there will be enough excitement, pressure and courage for Haye to fight me. All the nonsense, and then the lying about fighting us. I don’t like how he handles his business.”
Wladimir doesn’t trust Haye, and feels that he backed out of his fight with him and his older brother Vitali Klitschko because he was afraid of both of them and afraid to lose. Wladimir wants Haye to summon his courage and fight him, so that he can shut Haye up permanently. Haye had been saying he wanted to fight both of the Klitschko brothers, but he recently changed his tune about that, and wants the brothers to fight each other to make it easier for him. It will be of interest whether Vitali Klitschko will want to still fight Haye if he gets knocked out by Wladimir.
For Haye, it would be a smart move because he could get another payday before he retires from boxing. If Wladimir beats Haye badly, it will take a lot of promotion from Haye to convince fans that he has a chance against Vitali. Haye would have to really play up Vitali’s age and his lack of hand speed, otherwise people would just see it as a case of Haye wanting to get one more payday, even if it means another beating.