After years of trash talk and negotiations the time for talking was over. It happened at about 5:00 PM Eastern Standard Time, but it was 11:00 PM in Germany when Wladimir Klitschko and David Haye were finally inside the same boxing ring. It was a nearly two year wait for Haye and Klitschko to get inside the ring and it was the most hyped Heavyweight Boxing bout since Lennox Lewis battled Mike Tyson in 2002.
The fight was preceded by months, perhaps even years of trash talk; mainly from the David Haye camp. Finally, as Wladimir put it, it was time for the brash Brit to “put up or shut up.” The fight itself was a title unification super-fight that took place at the outdoor Imtech Arena Stadium, home to German soccer club Hamburger SV. The fight was set to have David Haye defend his WBA Heavyweight Title against Klitschko’s IBF, WBO and RING Magazine Heavyweight belts.
Despite poor weather conditions and talks of cancellation or postponement, the fight went on as scheduled on a damp and rainy German night. The Brit; Haye was the underdog heading into the fight. “The Hayemaker” was giving up over three inches in height and reach, two stone in weight and home-court advantage to the giant Ukrainian boxer.
The rain continued to pour down as the fight started. It was what most fans expected from Klitschko; an excellent use of his left jab to control the range and to set up power punches. Klitschko rarely deviated from his plan as continued to fire the jab away round after round. Despite claiming that he had a solution to the piston-like jab of Klitschko it hardly looked like David Haye had a plan inside the ring. He bobbed and weaved and often taunted his foe, trying to lure Klitschko into a brawl, but he was rarely successful.
As the fight wore on Haye chose to ignore his own jab and instead searched for the big overhand right. He was barely setting it up in the later rounds, instead choosing to gamble on the big power punch that could steal him a fight that he was losing. Haye looked quick at the beginning of the fight, but by the later rounds looked frustrated and often complained to the referee about potential fouls.
In the end it was a dominant performance by the Ukrainian “Doctor Steelhammer” who took home a decisive Unanimous Decision victory. Scores were 117-109, 118-108 and 116-110. Despite both fighters being known for their suspect chins, each was able to take a few power shots from the other and keep going, I think the fact that this fight went to the distance surprised many fans.
Post-Fight Bet Analysis:
The fight went relatively similar to how I expected it to go. If you didn’t read my preview article, I had a small wager on David Haye to win by Knockout. As I said in that article, I expected that for Haye to win he was going to need a Knockout as it was unlikely he was able to outbox Klitschko over 12 rounds and earn a decision.
That turned out to be very true. Haye looked fast and was bobbing and weaving excellently and managed to avoid most of the damage. He rolled with the punches well and was never really in trouble. Unfortunately, he never was able to get himself off. I think that the entire world (myself included) under-appreciated the skill and quickness of Klitschko’s lead left jab. He was able to keep Haye off balance, out of range and always on the defensive with it.
Haye was never able to set up his shots. Instead he waited outside range before leaping in and throwing wild power shots. A few did land and at times he seemed like he might have his larger opponent dizzy, but every time Klitschko was able to slow the pace and recover. In the end it was ring control and an effective jab that won the fight for Klitschko.
Hindsight is always 20-20, so looking back would I make the same bet again? Probably not. I believe that I over-valued Haye’s quickness and slightly discounted the quality of Klitschko’s jab and game planning.
Final Compubox Statistics for the Fight:
David Haye: Total punches was 72 landed out of 290 thrown. 36 jabs landed of 171 thrown and 36 power punches landed of 119 thrown.
As you can see, the glaring differences are in total punches thrown and total jabs thrown. Haye completely abandoned the use of his jab and instead chose to wing power punches, while Klitschko effectively used his jab to earn points on the scorecards and control the range of the fight.
Another scary total for Haye is his extremely low punches thrown count. Even though in terms of accuracy they were overall pretty close 26% and 25% landed respectively, Klitschko was able to win rounds by being the more aggressive fighter.
Lee McGregor is a fan of all combat sports including both Boxing and Mixed Martial Arts. When not catching fights or watching hockey, he can be found as an Author and Editor at his own website MyManCave.ca
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