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Tony Yoka vs. Christian Hammer on November 27th in Nantes, France

Image: Tony Yoka vs. Christian Hammer on November 27th in Nantes, France

By Kenneth Friedman: Heavyweight contender Tony Yoka takes on journeyman Christian Hammer this month in a 12-round scheduled fight on November 27th in Nantes, France. Hammer, 33, will be making is the first appearance since testing positive for COVID-19.

The German heavyweight Hammer had been scheduled to take on British domestic-level fighter David Allen last Saturday night on Halloween, but his positive wiped that fight out.

It’s important for Yoka to start advancing his career, as he’s not lived up to the expectations that many boxing fans had of him when he first turned pro in 2017. The France native Yoka should have already been well beyond this point in his career, as he’s trailing Anthony Joshua in his development.

Yoka (8-0, 7 KOs) captured a gold medal in the 2016 Olympics in beating Britain’s Joe Joyce by a controversial decision. If the fight had been scored like a professional contest, Joyce likely would have easily won.

But this being an amateur contest, the judges focused more on Yoka landing his weaker, fencing-like punches. They ignored the professional style power shots that Joyce was repeatedly nailing him with to the body and head.

Hopefully, Yoka keeps it clean because, in his last fight in September, he was repeatedly hitting former heavyweight world title challenger Johann Duhaupas in the back of the head in a first-round knockout.

That was hard to watch with the number of rabbit punches Yoka connected with before the contest was over.

“Yoka is a strong boxer, but I’ve been in the ring with completely different calibers. I want to work my way up again with a road win and show that you have to reckon with me in 2020 also,” Hammer said

Hammer has fought against some decent heavyweights during his 12-year professional career, but not against anyone particularly special.

These are the best fighters Hammer has faced during his 12-year pro career:

  • Luis Ortiz
  • Taras Bidenko
  • Mariusz Wach
  • Tyson Fury
  • Kevin Johnson
  • Erkan Teper
  • Alexander Povetkin
  • Michael Wallisch
  • David Price

Out of that bunch, Fury, Povetkin, and Ortiz stand out above the crowd for Hammer, and they all beat him.

Hammer lacks the size, power, and athleticism to trouble Yoka any. This fight will likely be a mismatch, with Yoka hitting Hammer at will until the contest is stopped.

It would be nice if Yoka showed better form against Hammer than what we saw in his last contest against Duhaupas. Yoka looked primitive in that fight, showing no boxing skills that one would expect from a 2016 Olympic gold medalist, even a controversial medalist.



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