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Tyson: Haye doesn’t have the punching power to get Wladimir to back off

By William Mackay: Former heavyweight champion of the world Mike Tyson doesn’t think that WBA heavyweight champion David Haye hits hard enough to keep Wladimir Klitschko off of him in this fight. Tyson, who was the premier of heavyweight sluggers in the late 80s and all throughout the 90s, isn’t impressed enough with Haye’s punching power to pick him against the much bigger 6’6″ 242 pound Klitschko. Haye is supposedly 6’3″, but in his fight with John Ruiz, who stands 6’2″, the two fighters were of identical height.

Haye will be giving away 30 pounds in weight and at least four inches in reach to Wladimir. The only real hope that Haye has to win is to try and knock Wladimir out, but Tyson doesn’t believe that Haye can punch hard enough to win. He certainly won’t be able to out-box Wladimir, because he doesn’t have great boxing skills and will be wasting too much time running around the ring trying to avoid getting hit with jabs rather than throwing jabs of his own. When you got a little guy like Holyfield, weighing a little over 208 and trying to stop a huge 240+ fighter like Wladimir, I don’t think things are going to go as well as they have been for Haye against his previous opposition.

Tyson said this to the BBC Sport: “David has never shown punching power to force a guy of Klitschko’s calibre into reverse gear. I don’t say this to disrespect Haye but as an objective observer. This is a two or three round fight.”

Tyson knows what he’s talking about, because he’s seen a lot of Haye’s fights and doesn’t appear to be really impressed with his punching power. It’s interesting that Tyson is picking Klitschko while Lennox Lewis is going with Haye to win by knockout. Of course, Lewis is British and that could account for his selection of Haye. Tyson obviously doesn’t share the same country of origin as Klitschko, which is why I tend to give what Tyson says more weight than what Lewis is saying about this fight.

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