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Dereck Chisora vs. Artur Szpilka possible for July 20 in London, England

Derek Chisora

By Scott Gilfoid: Former heavyweight world title challenger Artur Szpilka has been offered a fight against Dereck Chisora for the undercard of Dillian Whyte vs. Oscar Rivas on Sky Box Office at the O2 Arena in London, England, according to WPSportoweFakty.

If the Chisora-Szpilka fight gets made, it would make Matchroom Boxing promoter Eddie Hearn look a little disingenuous, because he said last Saturday night that Chisora would be involved in a “good fight.” Hearn said it would be a “50-50” type of fight on July 20 on the O2 card.

Szpilka (22-3, 15 KOs) has lost two out of his last four fights in suffering devastating knockout losses to WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder and Adam Kownacki. Szpilka has won last two fights against journeyman in 39-year-old Mariusz Wach and 44-year-old Dominick Guinn.

If Szpika is the guy that Chisora faces on the Whyte-Rivas card on Sky Box Office on the 20th of July, then it’s not all that surprising that Hearn has kept the news of the fight on the down low. If Hearn were to start talking about the Chisora vs. Szpilka fight, it would be like spraying repellent all over the Whyte vs. Rivas card. The less the boxing public knows about Chisora fighting Szpilka, the better it is for the Whyte-Rivas card.

Is Chisora vs. Szpilka a 50-50 fight?

“We’ve got a fight lined up for Chisora on July 20th, a good fight on our O2 show,” Hearn said to IFL TV. “We’ll announce. It’s a good fight, an entertaining fight, 50-50 character. It’s going to be a big fight on July 20th,” Hearn said.

Presuming that Hearn is referring to Szpilka vs. Chisora as the “50-50” fight that he’s talking about for the July 20th card, it doesn’t say much about what he thinks about Chisora, does it? Even as old and as depleted as the 35-year-old Chisora is at this stage in his 12-year pro career, he should have more than enough to make easy work of a limited fighter like Szpilka, but you never know. Maybe Hearn isn’t certain that Chisora can beat a fighter like Szpilka?

Why fans would like Chisora vs. Szpilka

For fans that love the Chisora-Szpilka fight, they can point to the fact that Szpilka lasted until the ninth round against Wilder before he was knocked unconscious and taken out of the ring on a stretcher in front of a shocked audience on January 16, 2016 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. It’s admirable that Szpilka lasted until the ninth round against the ‘Bronze Bomber’ Wilder. However, Wilder was still dealing with hand problems from a broken right hand, and he wasn’t using that hand much in the fight or his following fight against Chris Arreola.

Wilder was mostly just jabbing Szpilka in that fight to protect his right hand. When Wilder did finally unleash his right hand in the ninth, it left Szpilka out cold on the canvas. It was one of those sickening knockouts. In Szpilka’s next fight, he was knocked out in four rounds by a healthy Kownacki in July 2017. It’s interesting to note that Szpilka was out of the ring for 1 1/2 years after his bad knockout loss to Wilder.

Chisora was giving Whyte problems in their rematch last December before he was caught by a big left hand and knocked out in the 11th round. That was the fight in the referee over-involved himself by taking points off from Chisora twice in the fight.

Given all the two-way fouling that was going on in the fight, the referee would have been better off staying out of it unless he wanted to take points off from Whyte as well. Some boxing fans believed that the referee Marcus McDonnell was helping the A-side fighter Whyte, who was having all kinds of problems with Chisora. Whyte was losing the fight at the time of the stoppage.

Chisora was exposing Whyte as a limited fighter. It would have been interesting to see who would have won the contest if the referee McDonnell had stayed out of it and just let the two fight. There was too much fouling going on with both guys for the referee to just pick out Chisora repeatedly to take points off. It looked very odd the way Chisora kept getting docked points while Whyte’s fouls didn’t result in point deductions. Hopefully, we don’t see Oscar Rivas winding up in the same position that Chisora was in when he faces Whyte on July 20.

Since losing to Whyte, Chisora came back with a nice 10 round unanimous decision win over Senad Gashi (17-3, 17 KOs) on April 20. Chisora can beat those type of guys, and he can probably beat Whyte too if given a fight with high quality judges and a referee that stays out of it.

For this writer, a 50-50 type of fight for Chisora would be someone like Tony Yoka, Charles Martin, Michael Hunter, Agilt Kabyel, Tom Schwarz, Joseph Parker or Zhilei Zhang. Those are guys that would give Chisora some problems. Chisora would probably lose to fighters like Joe Joyce, Daniel Dubois, Kubrat Pulev [in a rematch], Sergey Kuzmin, Luis Ortiz, Alexander Povetkin and Kownacki.

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