W. Klitschko calls out Haye
Wladimir Klitschko wants a heavyweight title unification fight with
David Haye, and he doesn’t want to hear any more excuses.
Klitschko is calling out the British WBA champion, who has
never followed through on repeated vows to take the title belts of
Klitschko and his brother, Vitali. Wladimir is the IBF and WBO
champion, while Vitali holds the WBC belt.
Although Wladimir Klitschko’s representatives initiated talks
with Haye’s promoters Tuesday, Klitschko told The Associated Press
he believes Haye will once again find a way to back out of the
“I understand he’s scared, but just get yourself together,
and maybe you’ll get a lucky punch or whatever,” Klitschko said
over lunch at a Greek restaurant in the picturesque Larchmont
Village section of Los Angeles.
“I think he’s frightened and he won’t be willing to take the
chance, but it’s important for me to say that nothing is in the
way. There are no other fights. There will be enough money for
everybody. He just has to do what he says he will.”
With a rising voice and a clear disdain for Haye, the
normally decorous Klitschko called him a liar and a fraud who has
built his career on unfulfilled promises of challenging the
Klitschko brothers, who have reigned unbeaten atop the heavyweight
division since 2004.
“I just don’t like anything about the guy,” Klitschko said.
“How he talks, how he walks, anything. He’s basically betraying the
audience and the sport. Every division deserves a true champion,
and how can he claim to be a champion if he won’t fight me?”
Haye has been to the verge of fighting both Klitschko
brothers, getting their attention with incendiary statements about
what he planned to do in both words and pictures. He memorably
attended a news conference wearing a T-shirt with a rendering of
Haye holding the brothers’ severed heads.
But Haye never got in the ring with either brother. A
potential fight against Vitali Klitschko at Chelsea’s Stamford
Bridge arena was scrapped, and Haye pulled out of a June 20 fight
with Wladimir Klitschko, citing a back injury, two weeks before
they were scheduled to meet in Gelsenkirchen, Germany.
“It’s obvious now that his back injury was just garbage, and
he’s a liar,” Klitschko said.
Haye eventually took on 7-foot-2 Russian Nikolai Valuev,
claiming the WBA belt last year. Haye hasn’t stopped talking trash
about the Klitschko brothers, who rarely deign to say anything
negative about any opponent.
“This is the first time I’ve seen him this animated, this
motivated, to fight just one guy,” said Tom Loeffler, the managing
director of the Klitschko brothers’ K-2 Promotions.
Golden Boy CEO Richard Schaefer, who helps to promote Haye,
said earlier this week he would discuss the possibility of a bout
in England or in Germany, where the Klitschko brothers live and
fight before enormous crowds.
Haye defended his title earlier this month by stopping John
Ruiz, the overachieving former champion. Immediately after the
fight, Haye dismissed the notion of fighting Bernard Hopkins, but
said he might have to make a title defense against Valuev.
Nonsense, says Klitschko, adding that if he can get an
exception to his mandatory IBF title defense against Alexander
Povetkin, whose trainer says he isn’t yet skilled enough to face
Klitschko, Haye could fight Klitschko if he really wanted the bout.
“He says he’s going to fight Valuev, but everybody realizes
I’m the most exciting fight right now,” Klitschko said. “He did
create a lot of buzz with his nonsense, but he has to back up his
words instead of (weaseling) out.”
Klitschko referred to a bout with Haye, the former
cruiserweight champion, as “a signature fight for me. My brother
had a signature fight with Lennox Lewis. That’s what I want. I’ve
fought a lot of guys, but no signature fights.”
Klitschko has defended his IBF title eight times, most
recently stopping Eddie Chambers in Dusseldorf on March 20. He
hasn’t lost since April 2004, and just two of his last 12 fights
have even gone the distance.
“I want to be active, so I won’t rely on the liar to fight me
next,” Klitschko said. “But when only one person talks, people
will start to believe things that person tells them. I just decided
I need to get over my conservative style of handling things. I need
to make it as straight as possible: David ‘The Loser’ Haye won’t