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Barry McGuigan thinks Haye could KO Joshua

Anthony Joshua David HayeBy Scott Gilfoid: Former world champion Barry McGuigan sees unbeaten #2 WBC heavyweight contender Anthony Joshua (15-0, 15 KOs) as still a very flawed fighter at this point in his young pro career, and he thinks that former two division world champion David Haye (27-2, 25 KOs) would have the potential of knocking out the easy to hit 26-year-old Joshua.

It’s hard to argue with that notion because Joshua makes it easy for his opponents to nail him with his bad habit of bum rushing his opponents and mindless throwing flurries. I think Joshua’s bad habits are a product of the terrible opposition that he was being fed in his first 14 fights as a pro by his promoter Eddie Hearn.

Barry McGuigan’s son Shane trains Haye, so some boxing fans might see a tad bit of bias there for Haye because of that.

Haye will be fighting next on May 21st against a name still to be determined at the O2 Arena in London, UK. According to Sky Sports, Malik Scott, Bryant Jennings and Andrey Fedosov are the potential opponents that he’ll be choosing from. My guess is Haye will pick out Fedosov, because he’s almost a carbon copy of Haye’s last opponent Mark De Mori.

Joshua was facing guys that he didn’t need to worry about in the ring, because they were largely older fighters with mediocre talent even when they were in their youth. Against those guys, Joshua didn’t need to be mindful of catching anything in return because they didn’t have the power, skills or youth to do anything.

We saw recently how flawed Joshua when fought Dillian Whyte and was badly hurt in the 2nd round by him. If not for a shoulder injury that Whyte suffered in the second round, it’s quite possible that Joshua would have been knocked out. Besides Joshua’s chin being exposed in that fight, his poor stamina was also highlighted with him fighting with his mouth wide open like a giant goldfish looking for oxygen.

“I looked at Anthony Joshua and he’s also a spectacular talent but there are a lot of mistakes there, a lot of fundamental flaws with his defence,” McGuigan said to skysports.com. “They’ve got to get that right because if he fights David Haye, David will knock him unconscious with that right hand.”

So there it is. If Joshua fights Haye right now, he’ll get knocked unconscious by the “Hayemaker.” I doubt that Hearn will let his golden goose fight Haye anytime soon, especially if Haye keeps knocking guys out in the 1st round. I mean, that was scary the way that Haye blasted Mark De Mori out in one round last month at the O2 Arena in London, UK.

Granted, De Mori is a guy that arguably shouldn’t even be ranked in the top 15 in the heavyweight division, but Haye still looked very, very good. The difference I could see from this version of Haye and the version that fought in the past was his power and size. At 227, Haye seems to be a better puncher and has more weight to fight at the heavyweight level now.

If Haye could put on another eight pounds or so to get to 235, he would be a real danger to a lot of fighters in the division. However, with Haye, he’s the type that could take his training overboard and wind up getting lighter rather than heavier. I could see him getting trimmer and winding up at 210 once again. That’s the fighting weight that Haye was at when he was fighting guys like Wladimir Klitschko. Haye was far too light to be taking on the likes of the 245lb Klitschko. But if Haye could bulk up to 235 without losing hand speed, I think he would do a number on Joshua.

“He [Haye] is such a dangerous puncher. All he needs is half a second and the fight is over. It’s a very dangerous fight for Joshua right now,” McGuigan said. “I think Haye will win a world title, then there could be a series of unification fights with Tyson Fury, Deontay Wilder and Charles Martin.”

Well, I would definitely favor Haye to beat world champions Charles Martin, Tyson Fury and Ruslan Chagaev right now. I see those guys as having mediocre talent and are very beatable. The talented 6’7” Deontay Wilder is a different story, however. He’s too mobile and his reach is too long for the shorter 6’3” Haye to reach him with his punches. I could see Haye eating a jab all night long against Wilder and winding up losing by a lopsided decision.

For Haye to beat Joshua, he would have to fight with the same amount of courage that he showed against De Mori. In other words, Haye would need to fight aggressively rather than in the timid way that he showed against Wladimir and Nikolay Valuev. If you re-watch those fights on Youtube, you can see immediately that Haye fought like he was afraid to get hit.

The thing is if he had just plowed ahead and unloaded his combinations, he probably would have knocked out Wladimir and Valuev in the first six rounds. Instead, Haye fought scared and treated them with too much respect. The result was that both fights needlessly went the full 12 rounds.

Like I said, I don’t see Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn letting him fight Haye in 2016. If Haye keeps looking good, I see Hearn putting the fight off for as long as possible in order to keep Joshua from getting beaten before he starts laying golden eggs for Hearn and his Matchroom Sport promotional company. Hearn doesn’t even need to put Joshua in with dangerous opposition for him to bring in that good cash. The British fans don’t seem to mind that Joshua isn’t fighting the real dangerous heavyweights. At this rate, Hearn and Joshua could make big money for years just fighting guys like Dereck Chisora on Sky Box Office. I see Hearn protecting his golden goose Joshua by keeping him away from someone that could potentially take advantage of his defensive flaws and his questionable stamina. That probably means no Joshua-Haye fight unless we see Haye look terrible against one of his comeback opponents.


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