Dereck Chisora vs. Carlos Takam on July 28 on Whyte-Parker card
By Scott Gilfoid: Former heavyweight world title challengers Dereck Chisora (28-8, 20 KOs) and Carlos Takam (35-4-1, 27 KOs) will be fighting it out on July 28 on the undercard of the heavyweight clash between Dillian Whyte and Joseph Parker at the O2 Arena in London, England.
Chisora-Takam will be part of a huge card put together by Matchroom Sport promoter Eddie Hearn to please the British boxing fans, who will be paying to see the action on Sky Sports Box Office pay-per-view. This will not be free.
Hearn placing Chisora vs. Takam fight on the card would appear to be an effort on his part to stop the griping by the fans about having to pay to see a card that doesn’t have a particularly strong main event. Whyte vs. Parker is a good fight, but it’s not really a PPV worthy contest. Parker, 26, lost his last fight to Anthony Joshua, while Whyte has fought mostly middle of the road opposition since getting stopped in the 7th round by AJ in 2015.
All four of those heavyweights are badly in need of victories, as they’ve all recently suffered losses in major fights that have hurt their careers. It’s especially important for Chisora, 34, and the 37-year-old Takam to get a victory, as they’re getting up there in age and aren’t going to be getting too many more chances.
Despite being three years younger than Takam, Chisora’s career is in far worse shape, as he’s lost three out of his last six fights since 2013, and looked terrible in losses to Agit Kabayel, Whyte and Kubrat Pulev. Chisora did look good in his last fight in stopping little known Zakaria Azzouzi by a 2nd round knockout last March, but that wasn’t a world class opponent that he was facing in that fight.
Takam gave IBF/WBA heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua all he could handle last October before losing by a 10th round knockout at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales. Takam fought the last six rounds with a big cut over his right eye after getting hit by an uppercut from Joshua in round 4. Despite being cut, Takam continued to pressure and trouble Joshua until being stopped in the 10th. It was a questionable stoppage by the referee Phil Edwards, who some boxing fans felt was just looking for a reason to halt the contest. Takam had hurt Joshua earlier in the fight far worse, but Edwards allowed the fight to continue. It was only after Takam was slightly stunned in the 10th that the referee Edwards stopped the fight. The quick stoppage gave the fight a black eye, as it ended it before a true winner could be decided. Takam was fighting Joshua to a standstill up to that point in the contest.
“I’m delighted to get another big heavyweight clash over the line for July 28 – this is a great fight,” said Hearn in talking about the Chisora vs. Takam fight. “For Del Boy, it’s a real last chance saloon at World level and for Takam it’s a chance to push for another World title shot after a string showing against AJ. July 28 is going to be a huge night of boxing at The O2.”
It’s not going to be a “huge night” at the O2, as Hearn says. It’s going to be a night for boxing fans to see a lot of heavyweights that probably aren’t going anywhere. At best, the Whyte-Parker and Chisora-Takam winners will eventually wind up as retread opponents for Joshua to defend his titles against once again, but none of them will have much of a chance to beat him. It’ll just be retread time when one of them challenges AJ. That’s why the July 28 card has no real meaning in the big scheme of things for the heavyweight division. It’ll be Hearns way of building up an eventual retread opponent for Joshua. The fans want to see new blood facing Joshua instead of seeing Hearn lining up the same guys that have already fought him in the past. If anything, it would be interesting if Hearn were angling Takan-Chisora and Whyte-Parker winners to fight WBA World heavyweight champion Manuel Charr rather than Joshua, because they would have an excellent chance of beating him. They won’t likely do well against Josua, because they lack the talent to get the job done.
Besides the Chisora vs. Takam undercard fight, Kell Brook will be facing Brandon Cook in a WBO junior middleweight title eliminator on the card. Brook is trying to line himself up for a title shot against World Boxing Organization 154lb. champion Jaime Munguia (29-0, 25 KOs). Before Brook challenges Munguia, he’ll likely face Amir ‘King’ Khan in December in a long awaited domestic level clash.
Brook and Khan are both viewed as over-the-hill fighters in the eyes of a lot of boxing fan in their respective weight classes, so this fight is food for their British fans at home in the UK. There’s really not much interest from people outside of the UK in a fight between Khan and Brook. The fans that follow those two fighters outside of the UK would like to see them face top guys in their divisions instead of wasting time facing each other. In other words, people want to see Khan challenge for a world title at 147 against WBA champion Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman, IBF champ Errol Spence Jr., WBO champion Terence ‘Bud’ Crawford and the winner of the Shawn Porter vs. Danny Garcia card. Further, the fans want to see Brook show some courage by facing WBC junior middleweight champion Jermell Charlo or IBF/WBA junior middleweight champion Jarrett Hurd. Both of those champions have called Brook out, but he’s thus far shown zero interest in wanting to fight either of them.
It’s strange to see Brook being called out without him agreeing to the challenge. That’s why a lot of boxing fans believe that Brook is just looking to cash out against Khan, and not being serious as a true competitor in the sport any longer. Brook has lost twice in the last two years to Gennady Golovkin and Spence in beat downs that resulted with him suffering eye injuries. The good news is Brook didn’t suffer another eye injury in his last fight against junior middleweight fringe contender Sergey Rabchenko last March in winning by a 2nd round knockout. The bad news is Brook was matched against a bottom feeder in that fight and not against a true world class opponent. Brook’s next fight against the 32-year-old Brandon Cook on July 28 represents what amounts to be a step down in class from his last contest against Rabchenko. Hearn said he was going to have Brook take an opponent that was a step up in class, but that’s not going to be the case. Cook is a step DOWN from Rabchenko, and it’s a clear sign that Hearn doesn’t want to risk having Kell beat before he faces Khan in the cash out fight in December. Moreover, Brook is being angled on the path to fight the 21-year-old Mexican knockout artist Munguia rather than Charlo or Hurd by Hearn, which is seen as a weak move on his part. I’m not sure it’s going to work for Brook, as the 5’11’ Munguia is a huge fighter with tons of punching power and youth going for him.