By Scott Gilfoid: As of Tuesday, David Haye (26-2, 24 KOs) has revealed that he’ll be fighting in the next couple of months against #10 WBA heavyweight contender Mark De Mori (30-1-2, 26 KOs) in a comeback fight on 1/16 at the O2 Arena in London, UK.
For a rust ridding fight, this is a decent contest for Haye, because he’s facing a top 10 contender. A lot of heavyweights that have been out of the ring for as long as the 35-year-old Haye has wouldn’t have agreed to face a guy ranked in the top 10 like De Mori, even though he’s totally untested as a contender.
Haye won’t be trained by his old trainer Adam Booth for this fight, as the Hayemaker is now with Shane McGuidan, the son of former world champion Barry McGuigan. It pretty much doesn’t matter who trains Haye for this fight, because he should be able to beat the likes of De Mori without any problems as long as he doesn’t run out of gas and get clipped by one of De Mori’s big shots.
At 6’2”, 244lbs, De Mori will have at least a 30 pound weight advantage over Haye in this fight. Haye has proven in the past to be capable of beating bigger heavyweights than himself, so I suspect that will continue to be the case for this fight. But as bad as Haye looked in his loss to the 245lb Wladimir Klitschko in 2011, you have to be at least a little concerned for Haye in this fight.
After all, Haye is 35 now, and he has been out of the ring for the past three years. Further, Haye looks older now and doesn’t have the youthful look to him that he once had. I mean, Haye looks like a 35-year-old fighter, and that’s not good. De Mori, 33, is close to the same age as Haye, but he looks to be at least eight years younger than him in my view. De Mori looks to me to be someone around 28 rather than 33, and he might be the much younger fighter when the two of them get inside the ring and start trading bombs on January 16th.
“I’m so happy to be able to step back through the ropes and back into the ring, where I do my best work,” Haye said. “It’s been a long three and a half years out, with many ups and downs, but ‘The Hayemaker’ is finally back, and ready to do what I do best. I’ve a new team, new look and new inspiration to achieve my goals. I’ve always set the bar high in my career, and I will continue to do so. Please sit back and get ready for another fun-fuelled heavyweight campaign to the very top.”
It’s interesting that Haye has chosen January 16th for his comeback, because that’s the same date that WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder will be fighting next in defending his WBC title with a voluntary defense. You have to wonder whether it was intentional on Haye’s part to pick out the same date as Wilder in order to attract interest in a match-up between him and the talented 6’7” American star.
It’s no secret that Haye is very interested in facing Wilder for his WBC title. Wilder has worked as a sparring partner for Haye earlier in his career, so Haye kind of is familiar with him. However, Wilder has improved considerably since his days of working as a sparring partner for Haye, and I think he would find out that it’s a whole different kettle of fish to try and deal with Wilder now, given his huge progress as a heavyweight.
If Haye could somehow get a title shot against Wilder and beat him, then it would set up a big money fight against either Wladimir or Anthony Joshua. Haye would like both of those fights if possible. Heck, if Haye could get even one of them, he’d make a ton of cash.
Beating Wilder would revive Haye’s sagging career and put him in position to make big bucks against Joshua, Dillian Whyte or Klitschko. Unfortunately, Haye has a long ways to go before he can get a title shot against Deontay, and even if he did face him, he’d likely lose badly due to Wilder’s huge size, youth and incredible punching power.
De Mori was beaten 11 years ago by John Wyborn in 2004. De Mori also has draws against Elisara Sii Uta and Alex Leapai. As for De Mori’s wins, he’s beaten pretty much 3rd tier opposition his entire career. There’s been a failure to launch with De Mori for some reason.
When you look at De Mori’s resume, you see that he started off with 3rd tier opposition eleven years ago when he started his pro career in 2004, and now in 2015, he’s still fighting 3rd tier opposition.
Well, at least with the Haye fight, De Mori is finally cutting his teeth against his first top tier guy if you want to call Haye a top tier fighter. Frankly, I don’t know that Haye can still be seen as a top tier guy, because I have a feeling that we’re going to discover that his skills have badly eroded with his time out of the ring.
It’ll be very surprising if Haye is able to get himself all the way back to the top of the sport to win a world title. It would be a huge comeback story if Haye can do that. It’s not impossible, but the odds are obviously stacked against him.
If Haye can stay busy this time and fight more than once a year like we saw him largely do from 2009 to 2012, Haye can make a lot of money with his comeback. But he needs to fight frequently, because he’s too old to be fighting just once a year like he’s done in the past. It would be a pity if Haye only fights once a year for the next five years, and finds himself 40-years old and having frittered away much of his career by sitting on his backside for long stretches of time.