Kevin Johnson Will NOT Be Fighting Haye In November, It Looks Like J.D Chapman Will Be!

by James Slater - The David Haye press conference, in which he would announce who he would be fighting on November 15th, went ahead just hours ago in London, but there is still no dead-cert opponent for the former cruiserweight king. According to a news article on Setanta Sports, the T.V company that shows Haye's fights, no less than THREE potential opponents have pulled out in the last few days. The latest to do so, according to Haye's manager and trainer Adam Booth, is unbeaten, yet untested heavyweight J.D "The Natural" Chapman..

Last week it seemed another unbeaten fighter, in Kevin "King Pin" Johnson would be the man to land the November 15th fight, but according to Booth he wound up asking for too much money. So Chapman was then offered the fight and accepted it, only to pull out at the eleventh hour. However, promoter Richard Schaefer of Golden Boy still believes Chapman will take the fight. Schaefer apparently spoke with members of Chapman's camp just before today's press conference and is confident a deal can be made.

"I have a pretty good feeling that J.D Chapman will accept the fight," Schaefer said. "I've spoke to his people. I'm pretty confident J.D Chapman will show up on November 15th."

As for Haye, he is reportedly disappointed that Chapman has had second thoughts, but he too hopes the fight will happen.

"He comes to brawl," Haye said. "I haven't seen his fights but I liked the sound of him. He hadn't fought anyone but he had never been knocked down. I love the thought of fighting a guy who is the same size as [Wladimir] Klitschko. I hope we can shame him out of his hole and he'll come and fight."

Trainer/manager Booth also spoke about how sudden Chapman's pulling out of the fight was, while also saying how Johnson over-priced himself.

"He didn't get on the flight," Booth stated. "He said, 'I'm not coming to England to get knocked out.' This after agreeing a substantial amount of money. He is the third opponent in four days to agree terms and then to pull out. These opponents are running away from a supposedly chinny cruiserweight. Hopefully his balls will drop again and he will take the fight. We've got three more [names]. I'm not telling you who. There is some strategic interference going on. This is boxing. I'm not going to mention their names because I'm hoping they will come back to me. We went after Kevin Johnson but he over-negotiated his position."

So that's the state of play for the moment. This is disappointing news to say the least. Many people would have been happy with a Haye-Johnson fight, but the fight has fallen apart - though no fault of David Haye's it seems. And now Chapman is apparently playing games also. But would the fans be happy with a Haye-Chapman fight anyway? I suspect not. Unbeaten at 29-0(26) the 25-year-old Chapman may be, but he is nothing more than a raw, still novice-like prospect at this point in time. What would Haye prove if he got rind of him in ultra-quick time?

Hopefully, after having waited so patiently until today for news of Haye's next foe, we will find out for good very soon!

Article posted on 16.09.2008

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