Wladimir Klitschko-David Haye - Shades Of Lewis-Bowe

by James Slater - It's really starting to become tiresome now, yet we don't know who to get angry at - Wladmir Klitschko and his team, or David Haye and his. Much to the annoyance of fight fans who want to see one of the more appealing and potentially exciting heavyweight showdowns that has been available for quite some time, talks have once again broken down between the two big men and their managers/promoters. As such we seem to be facing the possibility of the best heavyweight match-up today not happening..

As frustrating as this is, we perhaps shouldn't be that surprised. Remember the heavyweight unification showdown that just had to happen in the 1990s between bitter rivals Riddick Bowe and Lennox Lewis? Well, that "must happen" clash, despite the saga of it being on, off, on, and off again, never actually happened either. It looks like we the fans of boxing are being given a serving of the same frustrating medicine with regards to Klitschko Vs. Haye.

Bowe and Lewis (or at least their respective handlers) insulted the fans again and again by talking the fight up and claiming that as soon as they met in the ring they would score a dominant KO. Okay, we thought, from late 1992 right up until late 1996, NOW the fight will get signed. Yet it never did - and to this day the argument goes on as to why. Was "Big Daddy" scared of Lewis? Or was it the other way on? There may have been financial details to be ironed out, but the fight not happening was surely down in large part to one fighter's willingness to wriggle out of the crucial bout.

We are now left with no choice but to think in the same terms with regards to today's sought after heavyweight rumble. No, it's never easy, it seems anyway, getting everything worked out when attempting to make a big fight - but the fans could care less about the legal wrangling. They hold the two fighters and them alone responsible for agreeing or not agreeing to a fight, and choose their target for who to throw the blame at when the fight fails to materialise. Pretty soon, if nothing is signed (and it doesn't look good) fans will vent their anger on either the IBF and WBO champion or the former cruiserweight king. Who is avoiding who?

Bowe and Lewis traded no end of insults, but they never swapped blows - and the fight we all felt would definitely happen eventually never came off. Who lost out? The fans, that's who.

All we can do is cross our fingers and hope that another intriguing, potentially explosive and "must happen" heavyweight clash doesn't end up going down the same drain.

Article posted on 11.03.2009

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