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Dillian Whyte not worried about Lucas Browne’s power

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By Scott Gilfoid: Dillian Whyte (22-1, 16 KOs) has no worries at all about the punching power of former WBA heavyweight champion Lucas ‘Big Daddy’ Browne (25-0, 22 KOs) in their fight this Saturday night at the O2 Arena in London, England.

As far as Whyte’s concerned, the 38-year-old Browne is just a “clubber” and not a puncher. Whyte rates his own punching power as being excellent, even though he’s been dragged the full distance in three out of his last six fights against mostly weak opposition.

A win for Whyte over the heavy-handed Browne on Saturday night will put him in position for a world title shot against WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder. Browne sees himself as having similar punching power as Anthony Joshua and Wilder. It’s debatable whether Browne carries that kind of punching power. But if he does have that kind of power, Whyte will likely be reduced to a pile of rubble on the canvas on Saturday night at the O2 Arena. Whyte disintegrated under the heavy shots from Joshua in their fight over two years ago in December 2015. Whyte handled the power from Joshua for the first couple of rounds, but by the 7th round he was done and left on the canvas in a heap.

“I’ve fought guys with a big punch, with speed, power, flashy technique, traditional boxing technique, tall guys who get a lot of leverage. He’s just a clubber,” Whyte said to about Browne. “He’s strong but he hasn’t fought anyone as youthful as me. He might have fought guys with better technique but they have been old.”

If Whyte doesn’t see Browne as a puncher, then he should feel comfortable standing in the pocket and trading bombs with him all night long on Saturday night. I’m not holding my breath waiting for Whyte to do that. I think Whyte is going to move around the ring once he starts feeling his punching power.

The best thing Whyte has going for him is his punch output. He’s not a big puncher anymore since he had surgery on his left shoulder. Whyte used to have a lot of power in his left hook, but that punch hasn’t come back for him since his surgery a little over two years ago. Whyte is now a high-volume slapper. That style has worked for him against the guys Whyte’s been matched up against since coming back from shoulder surgery. The only talented fighter that Whyte has fought in the last two years is Dereck Chisora in December 2016, and he really struggled against him.

Browne has only fought two top tier heavyweights in his nine-year pro career and those were Ruslan Chagaev and Andriy Rudenko. Whyte is correct about Browne having fought some guys with better technique than him, but it’s only two guys. Rudenko is a fringe contender and Chagaev was at the end of his career when he fought Browne.

Whyte’s promoter Eddie Hearn still hasn’t given up on the idea of trying to match him against WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder in his next fight if he’s victorious over Browne on Saturday night. Hearn is keen on making the Wilder-Whyte fight, as he believes that it’ll help build up a fight between the winner against IBF/WBA heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua. Hearn doesn’t seem to care that the move could cost Joshua a ton of money if Whyte beats Wilder. It’s odd that Hearn doesn’t have the foresight to see how much money Joshua would lose if Wilder suffers a defeat against Whyte. Hearn is usually wily in making smart moves with his fighters, but he’s definitely not thinking too clearly with the way he keeps taking up a fight between Whyte and Wilder. Even if Whyte were to beat Wilder, a rematch between him and Joshua wouldn’t bring in nearly the same amount of PPV buys as a Joshua-Wilder fight. The British boxing fans want to see Joshua and Deontay Wilder square off, not another fight between Joshua and Whyte. The fans have already seen that one.

A win for Whyte over Browne will catapult him to the mandatory spot in the World Boxing Council’s top 15 rankings. But that doesn’t mean that Whyte will get a fight against Wilder straightaway. The WBC isn’t going to order the unbeaten Deontay (40-0, 39 KOs) to start negotiations with Whyte right off the bat. The WBC wants to see Wilder and Joshua face each other in a unification fight. Whyte is clearly going to have to wait until after the Joshua-Wilder unification fight for him to get a shot at the WBC title. The only way Whyte will get a crack at the WBC title before the Joshua-Wilder fight takes place is if Hearn drags his feet about making that match-up, which he already has been doing. Wilder has been calling for a fight against Joshua for well over a year now, and Hearn has not made a move to put the fight together.

“It’s going to be bloody, and it ain’t going to be my blood. Smack talk aside, this will be a good fight,” Whyte said of Browne. “It’s last-chance saloon for him. When someone is deluded it makes them dangerous. He’s undefeated so he’s confident, but it’s up to me to put some hurt on him.”

Browne’s career is not at the “last-chance saloon” stage like Whyte says it is. Come on, Browne is undefeated at 25-0. How is he at the last chance saloon with a record like that? What you can say is Browne hasn’t taken advantage of his time as a top heavyweight. He’s tested positive twice for banned drugs, and he’s not been fighting frequently in the last two years. Browne has only fought once since his win over Chagaev in March 2016, and that was a fight against journeyman Matthew Greer in June of last year. Browne should have at least fought twice in 2017 instead of just once, and he should have already fought in 2018. Browne isn’t doing enough with his career for him to stay relevant. If Browne wins on Saturday night against Whyte, it would be good to see him take advantage of the victory by scheduling a quick fight afterwards to keep sharp while he waits for his eventual title shot against Deontay. I doubt that he’ll do that. I don’t know how Browne could sit out the remainder of 2018, but I won’t be surprised if that’s exactly what he does.

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