Fury chooses not to face Pulev in IBF eliminator; Haye fight now likely

06/01/2013 - By Michael Collins - Comments

fury2Unbeaten British heavyweight Tyson Fury (21-0, 15 KO’s) will likely be facing former WBA heavyweight champion David Haye next after the purse bid for the Fury vs. Kubrat Pulev (17-0, 9 KO’s) IBF eliminator bout was cancelled when Fury’s management opted not to take part in it.

The winner of the Fury-Pulev fight would have become the IBF mandatory challenger for IBF heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko. Fury and his promoter had talked about wanting to take that course for a title shot against Wladimir, but it looks like they had a change of mind.

It’s probably a good thing they did because the 6’4 ½” Pulev is no joke and it’s very likely Fury would have lost that fight and thus lost his chance at both a big money fight against Wladimir AND Haye.

Haye wasn’t interested in facing Fury until after his less than impressive performance against Steve Cunningham last April. Fury beat Cunningham by a 7th round TKO but Fury was dropped in the 2nd round and stunned by a hard right hand in the 3rd.

After Haye saw that fight he figured he could do a lot better than Cunningham, who Fury ready to go in the 2nd but he then ran out of gas and missed his chance. Haye thinks he can tag Fury with similar shots as the one that knocked Fury down.

I think it’s a smart move by Fury to skip the IBF eliminator bout against Pule. The Bulgarian was far too skilled and too solid of a fighter for the likes of Fury to beat him. We kind of saw Fury’s level exposed in him struggling to beat fringe contender Cunningham. If they put Fury in Pulev it would be bad news for Fury.

At least if Fury faces Haye, he’ll get a good payday in losing the fight and there won’t be as much criticism afterwards because Haye is a former two division world champion; whereas Pulev is just a contender.