Hearn has Plan-B option for Dillian Whyte’s Dec.22 fight
By Scott Gilfoid: It looks like the Dillian Whyte vs. Dereck Chisora 2 rematch won’t be taking place on December 22 after all. Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn is saying that the negotiations haven’t gone well between the two heavyweights, and they’re too far apart for the fight to have a realistic change of getting made for the 22nd of December at the O2 Arena in London, England.
Hearn says that Whyte (24-1, 17 KOs) still plans on fighting on that date, but he has a different fighter in mind. Hearn isn’t saying who that guy is, but it’s safe to say that it won’t be Luis ‘King Kong’ Ortiz (29-1, 25 KOs). He’s the guy that the boxing public wants the 30-year-old Whyte to fight, but Hearn hasn’t shown any real enthusiasm about making that fight for some peculiar reason. When Hearn does talk about the Whyte v. Ortiz fight, his face has the look of someone that is talking about an unpleasant thing. It isn’t hard to see that Hearn simply doesn’t fancy the idea of letting Whyte face the dangerous Cuban southpaw. Hearn has already stated that Whyte is the #1 choice for IBF/WBA/WBC heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua to fight on April 13 at Wembley Stadium in London, England.
“It’s happening, but I don’t think it’s Delboy. We’re out of the deal,” Hearn said to IFL TV about the Whyte vs. Chisora negotiations imploding. “I think Dillian Whyte will fight on December 22nd at the O2. We’re very close right now with making a deal for an opponent, and it’s not Chisora,” Hearn said.
What gives me the impression that Whyte is going to be fighting another dreadful journeyman level opponent is the way that Hearn isn’t giving any hints about who the Plan-B opponent will be for him. Normally when Hearn has a good Plan-B option, he smiles like the Cheshire Cat from ear to ear. In this case, Hearn isn’t smiling when he talks about Whyte potentially fighting someone else on December 22. Money seems to be the overiding concern for Hearn in finding an opponent that will accept what’s being offered. The problem is that the December 22 fight will be on Sky Box Office, which means that it’s at least somewhat important that Hearn find a live body for Whyte to fight instead of another fodder opponent like we’ve been seeing from him for the most part for the last three years.
The best Plan-B options for Whyte to fight on December 22 are these guys:
– Luis Ortiz
– Adam Kownacki
– Dominic Breazeale
– Bryant Jennings
– Joe Joyce
– Charles Martin
– Carlos Takam
– Zhilei Zhang
– Sergey Kuzmin
I suspect that Whyte loses to at least half of those guys if not all of them. I could see Hearn dragging in someone like 41-year-old Alexander Ustinov for Whyte to fight on December 22, and working hard to promote the fight by telling the boxing public how good the Russian fighter is. would be a dreadful fight, but so utterly predictable of Hearn to make this mismatch.
It’s easy to predict who Hearn has in mind for Whyte to fight on December 22, since he already mentioned Dominic Breazeale (19-1, 17 KOs) as the backup option for Dillian to fight in addition to Ortiz. In picking the 32-year-old former world title challenger Breazeale, Hearn is selecting someone who is less of a threat than the hard-hitting Cuban southpaw Ortiz. Hearn has already pretty much dismissed Ortiz as an option for Whyte, saying that he THINKS he’s fighting on December 1 on the undercard of the Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury card on Showtime PPV at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. However, nothing has been said by Wilder’s managers about Ortiz fighting on the undercard of that fight. You would think that with the Wilder-Fury fight only six weeks away that there would have been news already about Ortiz fighting on the undercard. Since there isn’t any information about Ortiz being on that card, it suggests that he’s free and available to fight Whyte on December 22. As such, if Hearn is going to come up with an excuse for why Whyte shouldn’t have to fight Ortiz on December 22, he’s got to come up with a better reason than that, because eit doesn’t look like the Cuban will be fighting on the Wilder-Fury card, does it?
“We still want the Chisora fight. It doesn’t look like [the Whyte vs. Chisora 2 fight will happen],” Hearn said. “We’re so far out. We’ve gone backwards. There was a number for Dereck, and we were close, and now he’s asking for more than what he was asking for before. Dillian is pissed off and said, ‘Get me another fight.’ Anything can happen. It could change,” Hearn said.
Chisora (29-8, 21 KOs) is still obviously the fight that Hearn wants to make for Whyte more than anything, because he’s a name that the British casual boxing fans are well familiar with due to his many big fights that he’s lost over the years against important fighters. Chisora has been around for 11 years as a pro, and he’s lost to the following heavyweights: Vitali Klitschko, Kubrat Pulev, Agit Kabayel, David Haye, Robert Helenius, Tyson Fury [twice] and Whyte. Chisora has been involved in a lot of fights, but he loses most of the time unfortunately. But the British fans still supposedly want to see Whyte fight Chisora, but the hardcore boxing fans are bored by that fight and want to see Luis Ortiz get his chance. Whyte has been mouthing off about Ortiz, calling him old, and making light of Wilder’s win over him. Whyte now has a great chance to show the boxing world that he’s on par with Wilder by taking on Ortiz and beating him in a better fashion than Wilder did last March. It’s no secret that Wilder has a lot of problems in defeating the 39-year-old Ortiz by a 10th round knockout on March 3 of this year, but that shows you how much talent the well-schooled Cuban has going for him. If Hearn is willing to let Whyte take a chance of proving himself against Ortiz, then that’s clearly the fight to be made. The boxing public doesn’t want to see Hearn trot out Chisora for a retread fight, even though Whyte defeated him by a controversial 12 round split decision two years ago. The time for a rematch between Whyte and Chisora was back in early 2017, not know when there’s arguably a much better fighter than Dereck willing and ready to take the fight on December 22 in Ortiz. Chisora was asking for a rematch with Whyte in 2017, but he was ignored. Instead of facing Chisora again, Whyte fought journeyman Malcolm Tann, Robert Helenius, Lucas ‘Big Daddy’ Browne and Joseph Parker. Whyte’s win over Parker was controversial as you can get with him getting credit for a head-butt knockdown, and then fouling like crazy in front of a referee that completely lost on the night.
Given that it looks like Hearn doesn’t like the idea of letting Ortiz get at Whyte, then Breazeale is clearly the best option for Dillian to fight on December 22. The 6’7″ Breazeale is arguably a much better opponent for Whyte to fight than Chisora, because he has a better chance of winning by knockout, which he probably will need to be able to get out of the O2 with a victory on December 22. A win for Whyte over Breazeale will make him the World Boxing Council mandatory for Deontay Wilder. I mean, Whyte still isn’t going to take the fight with Wilder, because he’s clearly going to be Joshua’s April 13 opponent at Wembley Stadium.