Price-Thompson: Is David stunting his career with weak opposition?
By Scott Gilfoid: The trainer wheels are still very much on despite unbeaten British heavyweight David Price (15-0, 13 KO’s) about to turn 30 in July, and there’s seemingly no end in sight with his never-ending soft opponents for the former 2008 British Olympian. Price will be fighting 41-year-old Tony Thompson (36-3, 24 KO’s) on February 23rd at the Echo Arena in Liverpool, England in what is supposed to be a step up fight for the 6’8” Price. How a fighter that looks as shot as Thompson can be any kind of a step up fight is beyond me.
Price may be doing a good job of padding his record and convincing the kool-aid drinkers who don’t have a clue that Thompson is no longer what he once was many years, but isn’t fooling me. This isn’t helping Price improve. It’s actually hurting him because it’s stunting his career by causing him to stay in the same place in his boxing development instead of improving.
You don’t improve when you face fodder, because all you do when facing weak opposition is pad your record and get a little older. Price is going to be in just as much trouble when he finally steps it up as he would have been when he first turned pro in 2008, because he’s totally unchanged other than now being four years older and not quite as fast on his feet as he was then.
Thompson doesn’t have a prayer, because he’s really sipped in a big way in terms of his fighting skills. I’ll give him the same advice that I gave 40-year-old Audley Harrison when he faced Price in October. Thompson has to go for Price’s fragile chin immediately with everything he’s got because unless he taps that chin early in the fight he won’t last more than a couple rounds. Price will be looking to prove a point by getting Thompson out of there earlier than Wladimir did, and the only way he can do that is by jumping him early instead of taking it easy on him.
Price expects to use up all of 2013 messing around trying to capture the EBU strap, and then maybe looking to fight in a heavyweight eliminator bout. In other words, we’ll probably not see Price fight for a world title until 2015. Is Price trying to wait out the Klitschkos until they retire or get so old that they’ve lost their skills? It does seem kind of odd for a fighter as old as Price still taking his time as if he’s got centuries to mess around before fighting for a strap for the first time.