Haye Has Heavyweight Plans: "I Can’t Wait To Go Up And Knock That Bum [Wladimir Klitschko] Out”

By Matthew Hurley: After he knocked out Jean-Marc Mormeck in the seventh round to take the WBA and WBC cruiserweight titles back in November David Haye began making noise about moving up to the heavyweight ranks. Ultimately preliminary talks with former heavyweight champion Hasim Rahman broke down when the topic of money came up and Haye, a fighter whose mentality and ego dictates that he accept any challenge turned his attention to WBO cruiserweight champion Enzo Maccarinelli..

Their all-British unification match-up on March 8th at the O2 Arena in London, appropriately billed ‘Bombs Away’, has boxing fans in the UK salivating over the potential for a classic on the level of Nigel Benn – Chris Eubank. The fight has also seeped into the consciousness of American fans thanks to where highlights of both fighters have generated a buzz on the other side of the pond.

Haye, who still has his sites set on the heavyweight division, is determined to become a crossover star in the US and he knows that a great showing against the determined, hard-hitting Maccarinelli is another step towards universal appeal. With the fight being broadcast on Showtime in the US the London based fighter is predicting a devastating knockout victory.

“I know American boxing fans love the knockout,” he said during a recent conference call. “They love you to bring the pain and give them entertainment. This is a great opportunity for me to show the American fans I’m not only the best cruiserweight in the world but the future of the heavyweight division.”

Haye’s intention on invading the heavyweight ranks comes up often when he talks about his future. The articulate fighter has said that he will retire by the time his reaches thirty-one years of age, which, if he adheres to that, gives him a small three year opportunity to achieve his lofty goals. Those of which include fighting in Las Vegas and wresting the heavyweight title from the grasp of the current crop of, what he feels, is an underachieving lot.

“You’ve got all these Russian pretenders,” he says mockingly. “These guys ain’t got no rhythm, no timing, no speed. They’re big and clumsy. Look at (Wladimir) Klitschko the other night. It was an embarrassment to boxing what he did. He should be stripped of his title just for that performance alone. It was a disgrace. And I can’t wait to go up and knock that bum out.”

Haye’s disdain for the current heavyweights notwithstanding the fighter does, somewhat halfheartedly acknowledge that before he moves up he has some unfinished business to take care of in the form of Enzo Maccarinelli.

“(Look), every time Maccarinelli has had a fight, it was against a guy that was coming off a few losses. So, to me, he’s never really been a main target until now. He’s such a target because he’s such a big name in the UK and people are waiting.”

Despite his dismissive attitude Haye did add that Maccarinelli is, “powerful and big and strong.” But the heavyweight division seems to dominate his thoughts.

“Cruiserweight is just a stop off,” he says. “It is just a way to do something historical. After I win on March 8th, I am going to go up and unify the heavyweight division. That has always been my ambition.”

The Maccarinelli – Haye cruiserweight unification bout will be broadcast live on Showtime Championship Boxing at 9 pm ET in the United States. The bout will begin at 2 am local time in London and be broadcast on the Setanta Sport Network.

The live undercard includes:

Carl Johanneson – Kevin Mitchell (For the British Commonwealth super featherweight championship)

Paul Smith – Cello Renda (For the middleweight championship of England)

Sauleymayne M’Baye – Jose Soto (welterweights)

Article posted on 06.03.2008

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