By Adam Baskin: Eddie Hearn says Derek Chisora can transmute a victory on Saturday night against Kubrat Pulev into a “big fight” later this year.
The Matchroom guru Hearn isn’t saying what type of opponent would translate into a “big fight” for the entertainer-style heavyweight Chisora (32-12, 23 KOs). Still, it’s not unreasonable to assume it could be one of these top fighters:
- Deontay Wilder
- Andy Ruiz Jr
- Luis Ortiz
- Joe Joyce
- Dillian Whyte
- Hughie Fury
- Filip Hrgovic
With Matchroom Boxing’s deep pockets, they could get most of those fighters to take on the grizzled 38-year-old veteran Chisora later this year if the price is right, but it all starts on Saturday night with ‘War’ in his rematch with Pulev.
Chisora will be marching into the ring on Saturday night as the underdog against the 41-year-old Pulev (29-2, 14 KOs) in their scheduled 12-round fight on DAZN at the O2 Arena in London, England.
Six years ago, Chisora was outboxed by the 6’5″ Bulgarian Pulev, losing a 12-round split decision in a fight that Derek was lucky to win one round.
The judges that worked that fight were overly generous when giving rounds to Chisora because he didn’t win any rounds in the true sense.
“If he wins, I think he’ll get a really big fight at the end of it,” said Eddie Hearn to iFL TV on what Chisora stands to gain if he defeats Pulev on Saturday night.
“If you look at the level he’s losing to. Tyson Fury twice, Oleksandr Usyk, Vitali Klitschko, Joseph Parker, robbed against Robert Helenius, had a close fight with Kubrat Pulev, lost to Dillian Whyte in two close fights,” Hearn said about Chisora.
“Obviously, he was doing very well in the second fight before he got chinned. So it’s harsh to say this guy isn’t a quality heavyweight.
“He’s better than 99% of the heavyweights out there, but unfortunately, he keeps fighting the one percent, and he wouldn’t have it any other way.
“I think the moment you see regression from Chisora in the ring, particularly in camp, that’s when it’s time to walk away. But for the moment, I feel he’s putting in good performances, and this will be a good telling point because this is a tough fight.
“Kubrat Pulev is up for it, they’re pretty confident going into the fight, but again, he’s fighting a guy that is a top 15 heavyweight. So he can lose,” Hearn said about the 38-year-old Chisora.
“Four back-to-back defeats is never good for anyone, nor is there two. But again, the harsh reality is that sometimes Chisora is not as good as the people he’s fighting.
“That’s as much as I can give it to you in layman’s terms as possible, but he just wants to have a big fight. He loves fighting, he loves fighting at the O2, he’s entertaining, he’s great to watch, and I believe you’re going to see another entertaining fight on the weekend,” said Hearn.