Why Chisora and Haye are a couple of Haytemakers
By Martin ‘the Brain’ Potter (formerly of the Boxing Clever podcast)
In the aftermath of the Haye – Chisora press conference brawl, the knowing smirk on Vitali Klitschko’s face said it all; what a pair of idiotic clowns these two British heavyweight world title wannabes are. Both Dereck Chisora and David Haye were soundly beaten in their respective bouts with Vitali and Wladimir – following classless pre-fight antics towards the dignified champions – yet here they were arguing over who should get the next crack. The answer of course, in a sane boxing universe, should be neither. If fighters were rated on trash talk and even trashier behaviour then Haye and Chisora would be flying high in the pound for pound ratings, with the mundane Ukrainian brothers K languishing in mediocrity. Fortunately boxing is not quite in that place yet, but with Haye and Chisora trying to drag it there, I take a look at the protagonists in this sorry story…
First up let’s consider David Haye. This is a talented fighter whose career, if I’m being hyper critical, could be described as one long publicity stunt punctuated by a few decent performances. Such is the warmth of the talk that emits from Haye’s big mouth, I’m certain he could inflate a fleet of hot air balloons. The only thing bigger than Haye’s mouth is his ego. On Saturday the combined might of said mouth and ego were in full effect, with Haye turning up at a press conference that he had no reason to be at, trying to bag a fight (with Vitali) he has no right to get. The irony is that instead of talking himself into a fight (his tried and tested method); it seems that Haye has now fought himself out of one.
If Haye had put as much effort into his fight with Wladimir as he does with hyperbole, then maybe he would warrant a fight with Vitali. The fact is that Haye’s last performance was poor, especially when weighed against his pre fight promises. Haye then pretended to retire (a sham designed to save face and a cynical attempt to try to force another Klitschko fight) and in light of these things I believe that if he wants a rematch he should earn it with his fists by fighting some other contenders (in the ring!), not by spouting his mouth (it’s getting boring David!)
The saving grace for Haye in the whole brawl fiasco is that despite his history of crass comments and pre fight stunts, he has never been involved in a violent incident like this previously. The same can not be said for Del Boy…
To use the title of a well-known film, Dereck Chisora has a ‘history of violence’ (although maybe ‘one flew over the cuckoos nest’ would be more appropriate). A conviction for a violent altercation with a girlfriend, a boxing ban for biting an opponent, trying to incite both Vitali (with the slap) and Wladimir (with the spit) and now this – it would appear that all is not ‘luvvly jubbly’ in Del Boy’s head.
In some respects I feel for Chisora… Ok, hear me out… For the past 18 months he has been treated like a disposable plaything by the Klitschko brothers. One minute a fight’s on, then it’s off, then on, then off and then on again. The mighty Klitschko machine chewed him up and spat him out – no wonder he was slightly bitter. Whilst the Klitschko brothers could certainly teach both Chisora and Haye some manners, they could also throw in some lessons on how to use far more subtle, but just as effective, gamesmanship. Chisora, a man with a hair-trigger temper, was always going to react badly when the pressure was on – that is exactly what happened.
The real big shame for Del Boy though is that although he handled the out of ring shenanigans extremely badly, his stock as a boxer should be at an all time high following a brave, committed performance that (in my opinion) put Haye’s lacklustre effort against Wlad to shame. But anything achieved in the ring by Del Boy on Saturday night is sadly outweighed by everything he did out of it (and in it, if you count the spitting incident). His stock as a professional and as a man has fallen faster and harder than a Larry Holmes drop kick!
The behaviour of Haye and Chisora was reprehensible, but does it really warrant the indignant moral outrage from middle class Mail readers who wouldn’t know a boxing ring from a Hula Hoop? Saturday’s events were not a boxing problem or a true reflection of the sport I love, they were just two macho idiots fuelled by ego and adrenalin. Yes it was bad, yes it was distasteful and yes, I have little time for these men, but life time bans? Banning boxing? Really?
Was John Prescott banned from politics when he punched a protester? Were the houses of parliament torn down when greedy politicians were caught out claiming for money that belonged to taxpayers, all the while telling said taxpayers to tighten their belts? Was any one jailed for invading Iraq and killing thousands on the premise of a lie?! Sorry to get all political, but the Chisora – Haye brawl needs perspective – it was two men caught up in the heat of the moment having a fight. It wasn’t big, it wasn’t clever and both should be punished, but within reason.
Many promoters have come out and said they would not promote a Haye against Chisora fight. Many promoters are not always entirely honest. Whilst David Haye and Dereck Chisora have dragged the name of boxing into the gutter, they have made it (and themselves) front page news. A Chisora – Haye fight might be clouded in controversy should it ever happen (for the record, I don’t think it will) but it would also be clouded in cash. Vitali Klitschko may have had a knowing smirk on his face in Munich, but if Chisora and Haye do fight (in the ring) then I think it will be a British promoter of the not entirely honest variety who has the last laugh…
You can hear more boxing thoughts from me on Twitter @theboxingbrain. You can also catch the last episode, featuring more Haye – Chisora talk (and all previous episodes), of the Boxing Clever podcast at http://www.boxingclever.libsyn.com/ or on iTunes.