Shannon Briggs: David Haye is afraid
By Scott Gilfoid: Since arriving in London earlier this week, former WBO heavyweight champion Shannon Briggs has been hunting for Davi Haye everywhere to try to get a fight against him on May 21. Briggs went to Haye’s gym, and he wasn’t there. Briggs’ conclusion is that Haye is plain scared to fight him and is in hiding. Briggs could be right about Haye. I mean, if he were truly interested in fighting him, he would have made an effort by now to meet with him to sign for a fight.
For his part, Haye has been showing interest in another direction in trying to lure WBA heavyweight champion Lucas “Big Daddy” Browne into fighting him. The problem that Haye has is Browne is already committed to fighting Fres Oquendo next.
Browne thinks Haye needs to earn the shot at a title, as he’s only had one fight in the last three and a half years. Haye came off a long layoff and beat a handpicked opponent in Mark De Mori last January. Now after that meaningless win, which proved nothing, Haye feels he deserves a world title shot. If Haye were to get a title shot immediately, it might send the wrong message to other heavyweights in the division that they can sit inactive for close to four years and start calling out the champions after they whip an over-matched opponent with an inflated ranking like De Mori.
“I can’t find him nowhere, been everywhere, you name it. Brighton, Knightsbridge – all over the place – Sheffield, Essex, Manchester – man you name it. Castles, I’m looking for him everywhere,” said Briggs via skysports.com. “I think he’s afraid, terrified. I came here on a one-way ticket and I’m not leaving empty-handed.”
I think Briggs should look instead to fight one of the UK guys that will readily agree to fight him. I think someone like Gary Cornish would probably entertain a fight with Briggs straightaway. Briggs could then get his name out there in the UK by demolishing the same guy that Joshua did last year in his 1st round knockout in September of 2015.
If Briggs does the same thing to Cornish, it would take a lot of the shine off of Joshua’s demolition job. Briggs needs to focus on attainable fights. Haye just doesn’t seem to fancy the job of fighting Briggs. My guess is Haye will look for another De Mori soft job to beat, and then crow about the victory afterwards. Briggs would be a MAJOR step up in class from De Mori if Haye were willing to take the risk to fight him, which he doesn’t appear to be willing to do.
I can’t wait to find out who Haye ultimately picks out for his May 21. If it’s a quality guy, then power to him. I would respect him for it. If it’s a lesser fighter than Briggs, then you’ll know that Haye is just taking record-padding fights until he gets his cash out fight against Anthony Joshua or Charles Martin. I don’t think that Haye is going to get anywhere near a quality heavyweight.
I suspect it’s going to be a contender with an inflated ranking and marginal skills. In other words, I see Haye fighting a gawd awful contender that doesn’t rate to be ranked in the top 15. Each of the four sanctioning bodies has a number of weak/vulnerable heavyweights ranked in their top 15. It’s going to be easy for Haye to pick just the right guy to get an easy win against, and look good in doing so. Briggs need not apply, because he’s dangerous even though he’s 44-years-old and clearly WAY past his prime.
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