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Lateef Kayode to campaign as a heavyweight in 2013

Lateef KayodeBy Jason Kim: Unbeaten cruiserweight Lateef Kayode (18-0, 14 KO’s) has decided to move up to the heavyweight division and give that division a try starting in 2013. Kayode, 29, is expected to fight for the first time at this new weight in February.

It looks like Kayode may have seen how other cruiserweights like Johnathon Banks, Antonio Tarver, Tomasz Adamek, Jean Marc Mormeck and Steve Cunningham have been able to move up to heavyweight and find a certain amount of success and make bigger money.

However, those fighters for the most part were able to first prove themselves by capturing world titles at cruiserweight before moving up to the heavyweight division.

Kayode hasn’t proven anything and it’s debatable whether he could ever beat guys like WBO cruiserweight champion Marco Huck, IBF champ Yoan Pablo Hernandez, WBC champ Krzysztof Wlodarczyk, WBA champ Denis Lebedev or WBO champ Ola Afolabi. Those would be very tough fights for Kayode, because he was hurt a number of times in his last fight against then 43-year-old Antonio Tarver last June. That was ruled a 12 round draw, but later changed to a no contest after Tarver tested positive for a banned substance.

It’s not a good sign, however, that Kayode was getting hurt by Tarver because there are many bigger punchers at heavyweight than Tarver. Kayode also has a problem in that he’s mostly an arm puncher and he doesn’t have a great jab to keep out of the way of the bigger and stronger guys at heavyweight. If he tries to beat guys on arm punching, he’s going to have problems because he’s going to get his chin checked and I don’t think he’s going to pass that test.

I think Kayode may find himself back down at cruiserweight after he takes a couple of losses. Hopefully, he realizes sooner rather than later that he doesn’t have the size to fight at cruiserweight. He’s only 6’1 ½” and he doesn’t have a big frame. He’s not going to be able to move around the ring like Adamek did when he first moved up to heavyweight, because he’s not very light on his feet. That means he’s going to have to take a lot more punishment in the process of winning his fights.

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