Both Tony Bellew and David Haye have options, quite a few in fact. WBC cruiserweight champion Bellew has a number of potentially big and financially rewarding fights at 200-pounds, where the proud Liverpool man could try and unify the division, while Haye, who has a fight upcoming in December (opponent still to be determined) has possible big money fights with the likes of Anthony Joshua (really big money!) and maybe Shannon Briggs on the horizon.
But it could be that the next move the two make is one that sees them fight each other. Bellew has been calling Haye out for some time now, convinced as he is on two things: Haye is “conning the British public” with his “pathetic” choice of opposition, and he can put an end to the charade by “smashing” him in a real fight. Haye, responding to Bellew’s taunts after “Bomber’s” impressive 3rd-round demolition of BJ Flores last night, said he would “KO Bellew with a jab,” and that the fight would be “an easy night’s work.”
But will it happen? Promoter Eddie Hearn says the fight “has got to happen,” and Haye, in speaking with IFL TV, said he will gauge the fan interest around the conutry and will take the fight “if the public wants it.” But Haye warned Bellew, who he calls one of the best cruiserweights in the world, how it is “a completely different story at heavyweight.”
“Pound-for-Pound, I’m probably the hardest puncher on the planet,” Haye told Kugan Cassius.
But money talks and if this fight – one that, according to Haye, both Adam Smith of Sky and Hearn told him is a possible pay-per-view event – has done what it appeared to have done last nigbt inside a packed arena in Liverpool, and that’s whet the public appetite in a major way, then it could happen. Bellew, who looks a totally differet animal as a cruiserweight compared to his light-heavyweight days, insists that, dimension-wise, there is not too much to seperate he and Haye.
Haye disagrees, insisting, with a smile, that Bellew would be the one that got “smashed” should the fight happen. Haye said he still wants to fight Briggs, but that that fight is not a pay-per-view fight. Is Haye-Bellew a fight the fans would shell out for? With a stacked under-card, yes, well, maybe. On paper, Haye has to be looked at as a pretty big favourite to defeat Bellew, by stoppage. Haye has tangled with the biggest and the best at heavyweight (Klitschko) and some other notable big men (Valuev, Ruiz, Chisora) and he has never ben stopped at the weight.
Bellew’s power might serve him well at 220 to 225-pounds, but how would his chin hold up to a Haye power shot? Bellew is fond of recalling the time when, as a “young boy coming off my first ABA tournament, I smashed Haye in Sparring.” Bellew is referring to the time, many moons ago, as he hmself put it, when he and David Price both sparred with Haye as Haye was getting read to fight Mark Hobson. Bellew says he and “Pricey” beat him up so bad that the next day, Haye pulled put of the Hobson fight.
Today, this episode doesn’t mean too much (as Bellews himself acknowledges) but “Bomber” has seemingly 100-percent mental conviction that he can hit, hurt and defeat Haye. If enough British fans feel the same way and want to see it, the fight could be a moneyspinner for some time in 2017.