By Jake Tiernan: Tim Bradley predicts Daniel Dubois will crumble from the pressure by IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Oleksandr Usyk and wind up getting knocked out in the later rounds on Saturday night on August 26th at the Tarczyński Arena Wrocław in Wroclaw, Poland.
If the fight plays out like that, it would be identical to how Dubois 19-1, 18 KOs) disintegrated from the heavy pressure that Joe Joyce put him under and quit in the tenth round in November 2020.
Of course, that was nearly three years ago, and Dubois was destined for trouble fighting the 2016 Olympic silver medalist Joyce at that career stage.
Dubois was only 22 and didn’t have the seasoning to be going up against a guy with the amateur pedigree that Joyce possessed.
With that said, the now 25-year-old Dubois doesn’t possess the experience to be fighting a guy like Usyk, which is why we’re likely to see Bradley’s prediction come true.
If Dubois loses, you can blame it on his management for not putting him in with the opposition to prepare him for fights against guys like Usyk, Deontay Wilder, Tyson Fury, or at least a dozen of the top 15.
Daniel’s management has spoon-fed him the weak contenders since his loss to Joyce:
- Kevin Lerena
- Bogdan Dinu
- Joe Cusumano
- Trevor Bryan
Those are the types of opposition a fighter would face to prepare them for someone like Dereck Chisora, Agit Kabayel, and Jonathan Guidry.
Dubois will crumble under the pressure
“Much like his last outing, Dubois will begin to crumble under the immense heat and pressure applied by Usyk,” said Tim Bradley to ESPN. “I anticipate a resounding knockout victory for Usyk.
It’ll be surprising if Dubois doesn’t fall apart against Usyk because he looked like an awful mess in his last fight, getting dropped three times by little known Kevin Lerena.
“It will become apparent why the highly regarded WBC champion Tyson Fury, widely considered the No. 1 heavyweight in the world, chose to avoid facing the immoveable dangerous, determined Usyk,” said Bradley.
If Usyk looks too good on Saturday night with a blowout victory over Dubois, that could permanently scare off Fury for good. Many boxing fans believe Fury is terrified of fighting Usyk, and they him turning down aa 70-30 offer as all the proof they need to verify that.
“You’ve got the challenger if you look at the bookies, doesn’t really have a shot,” said David Haye to TNT Sports Boxing about Oleksandr Usyk being the favorite against Daniel Dubois.
“It happens from time to time if the hearts there, if the minds there, crazy things happen in this heavyweight division.
“It solely depends on Dubois. If Dubois does what he does in any of his previous fights, he loses the fight on points or by late stoppage. If he does what he does and goes into the ring like he did against Kevin Lerena, he loses the fight. It’s no secret.”
It’s not just about Dubois. Usyk will have a lot to do with who wins this fight on Saturday night as if he’s in the same form he was in his two wins over Anthony Joshua, Dubois doesn’t have a chance, apart from injury.
“If he comes and fights like he fought Joe Joyce, those were his last two big fights, he loses,” said Haye. “But I believe there’s a version that we haven’t seen yet. I’ve seen stuff in the gym, sparring, which I haven’t seen in the ring.
“I rated Dubois significantly better after watching him behind closed doors sparring because he was doing stuff that he hadn’t done on fight night yet,” said Haye.
It would be nice if Haye revealed who Dubois was sparring with and whether they were going easy on him for fear of being fired if they turned up the heat. A lot of sparring partners are hesitant to go all out because if they beat up the guy they’re helping out, they could be sent home.
Can Dubois pull off upset?
“If he can take some of that magic that I saw behind closed doors, that I know he can do and implement it on Saturday night,” Haye said. “When the lights are on, I know he has a shot. Not only a shot of winning but winning by a spectacular knockout.
“It’s solely down to him. He can have whoever he wants screaming at him between rounds. He’s got to want it in his heart; he’s got to understand, ‘Life or death, I’m going to have to go through the fire,” said Haye.
If Usyk is affected by the 365 days he’s been out of the ring since his last fight, Dubois has a better shot of winning.
“‘I’m going to have to go through whatever I have to go through,” said Haye. “I might have to climb off the canvas, but I’m going to keep on swinging, throwing combinations, throwing hooks to the body, hooks to the head while Usyk tucks up; he’s going to need to do damage hitting his arms, hitting him in the hips, back of the head, hold & hit him.”
Getting knocked down by Usyk would be curtains for Dubois because he’ll look to finish him off if he hurts him, and he’s not going to let him survive the way Lerena did last December.
“You’ve got to take some of the chinks out of Usyk to slow him down because if you can’t if you give him room, he’s going to dance rings around you, and he’s going to settle into a pace where you’re locked out off the fight,” said Haye.
“You’re in that beautiful zone that Usyk gets very comfortable with, and he can do it for 20 rounds. Forget twelve rounds.
“If he boxes him like Anthony Joshua boxed him with lots of respect, lots of touching gloves, lots of jabbing, single jabs, looking for the perfect shot, it’ll be a nightmare, and he’ll lose 100 times out of 100 times.
“You need to throw punches at shots that aren’t there yet. Don’t look for a shot. He won’t give you it. You’ve got to throw three or four punches and have him duck into a shot that he doesn’t know is coming.
“That’s the only way to do it, and I believe he has the capability to do it, and it’s solely down to what Daniel Dubois wants. It’s in his control, and I implore the British fight fans to get behind him. to really cheer him on, and send him the good energy as possible because he’s going to need it.
“He really is going to need it, but it happens from time to time the impossible happens, and I think this is one of those situations,” said Haye.