David Haye says IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua will make easy work of former undisputed cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Usyk on September 25th by knocking him out with a jab at the Tottenham Hotspurs Stadium in London,
Former two-division world champion Haye doesn’t rate Usyk after seeing him defeat his former fighter Derek Chisora last year in October. Usyk (18-0, 13 KOs) outworked Chisora to win a 12 round split decision, but it wasn’t pretty.
The 2012 Olympic gold medalist Usyk had issues with the pressure that the much heavier 255 lb Chisora was putting on him. For that fight, Usyk weighed 217 lbs and was giving away 38 lbs. If not for Chisora being so old, slow, and past it, Usyk might have lost.
With that said, Haye appears to be greatly underestimating Usyk by predicting that Joshua (24-1, 22 KOs) will knock him out with a jab. Hopefully, Haye isn’t still holding some resentment over watching Usyk defeat Chisora, who he used to manage up until recently.
The way Chisora fought, he deserved the loss to Usyk, as he was too slow in that fight and wide open for everything the Ukrainian fighter threw at him.
“I’ll tell you exactly what punch it’s going to be – a jab, right hand, and then a straight jab again. The jab will knock out Usyk. He will knock Usyk out with a jab,” said David Haye to Sky Sports in making a prediction on the Joshua vs. Usyk fight on September 25th.
Joshua, 31, is someone that is hard to count on for a victory in pretty much any fight against a top five-level fighter. You can assume that the 6’6″ Joshua will beat Usyk based on his three-inch height, four-inch reach, and his 15-lb weight advantage, but it won’t be surprising at all if he loses.
Joshua lost to an inferior fighter to Usyk in his first fight against Andy Ruiz Jr in 2019, and he might have gotten beat a second time if ‘The Destroyer” hadn’t lived it up and eaten himself to a state of obesity at 283 lbs for the rematch.
In Joshua’s last fight against 40-year-old Kubrat Pulev last December, he looked one-dimensional with the way he was throwing uppercuts the entire contest.
Pulev looked woefully out of place challenging for a world title at his age and limited skill level. The big Bulgarian earned his title shot against Joshua by beating Hughie Fury, which tells you all you need to know about his suitability for the fight.
If Pulev had been able to adapt by getting out of the way of Joshua’s repeated uppercuts that he was throwing, he might have beaten him. Joshua looked amateurish the way he was totally focused on throwing uppercuts, and that’s nothing that’s going to work against Usyk.
“I think his style might be very effective if AJ was 6’2″ and 14 stone,” said Haye about Usyk. “But AJ isn’t. AJ is 6’6” and he’s an absolute specimen, and he’s one of the best athletes ever in the heavyweight division.
“That just spells knockout defeat for Usyk,” Haye added.
You can’t rule out a knockout victory for Usyk in this fight because Joshua is a mediocre champion, and he’s there to be beaten by any top-five heavyweight with power and ring intelligence.
It doesn’t matter that Usyk is smaller than Joshua and isn’t a natural heavyweight. He’s got the ability to win this fight, and wreck AJ’s career. Frankly, it’s surprising that Joshua is even taking the fight. He should have vacated the WBO belt and waited on the winner of the Tyson Fury vs. Deontay Wilder clash.
“If Usyk was the future of the heavyweight division and he’s going to be good enough to beat AJ, he should have at least stopped Derek Chisora or won by a landslide,” said Haye.
“But he didn’t. He wasn’t able to keep the heavier man off him. He didn’t have the firepower,” said Haye.