By Scott Gilfoid: The November 10th fight between WBO light heavyweight champion Nathan Cleverly (24-0, 11 KO’s) and unbeaten Ryan Coyne (21-0, 9 KO’s) is in danger of not going through due to the 30-year-old Coyne’s former promoter Don King possibly still having him under contract.
I don’t see it any less whatsoever if this fight doesn’t happen. It’s not an interesting bout at all, period. It’s just another mismatch involving Cleverly against another obscure guy.
If the fight can’t go through then it’ll be the second opponent for Cleverly that has been erased. He was previously supposed to fight Ukrainian fringe contender Vyacheslav Uzelkov, but that fight suddenly disappeared when Cleverly’s team decided to have him fight in the United States.
There were rumors of poor ticket sales for the Cleverly vs. Uzelkov fight, but it’s unclear what the real reason for Uzelkov being replaced. If Cleverly’s management specifically selected Coyne because he’s an American and hoping that American’s would actually care about this fight then I think he’s mistaken because Coyne is a complete unknown in the U.S, even among many hardcore fans. Uzelkov would have about the same. In other words, few people would care who Cleverly fights because they have no clue who he is so it wouldn’t matter.
If Coyne can’t take the fight then it’s really no loss because few people have ever heard of him in the U.S. It’s not as if he was a star and someone that American boxing fans wanted to see. And it’s not as if he had a real chance to win this fight, because he looks very, very, very average to me, and about the same as pretty much all of the guys that Cleverly has fought during his career.
I don’t expect Cleverly to be matched up against anyone good if they opt to replace Coyne. That would be going against his track record. We’ll likely see another bottom feeder brought in to take the fight and it’ll result in another boring fight like Cleverly’s recent mismatch against little known American Tommy Karpency. I’d never heard of the guy before Cleverly fought him, and I’ve not heard of him since.
I just see Cleverly as a paper champion, and one that will never fight anyone good until one of these days a quality contender gets ranked by the WBO instead of the poor guys they have ranked currently. But even then, I expect the contender that eventually beats him will have to become the mandatory challenger because I don’t see Cleverly being put in with someone that can actually fight.
I just hope that Cleverly’s fight against Coyne or whoever replaces him doesn’t make American television on Showtime because I don’t want to see valuable television coverage wasted on a mismatch. The card has two mismatches already on it with Alfredo Angulo vs. Raul Casarez and Leo Santa Cruz vs. Victor Zaleta. We don’t need another mismatch involving a fighter that few if any casual fans have ever heard of being televised, because then the card will have only the main event because Abner Mares and Anselmo Moreno as being the only good fight on the card in terms of a competitive match-up.