Wladimir Klitschko will take on David Haye in a heavyweight division unification bout on Saturday. It's by far the most anticipated and important heavyweight bout since Lennox Lewis took on Vitali Klitschko in 2003.
The winner will control three (IBF, WBA, WBO) of the four major belts. Vitali Klitschko, who will fight Tomasz Adamek on September 10 in Poland, has the WBC belt.
When: Saturday, July 2
Where: Imtech Arena in Hamburg, Germany (57,000 capacity)
Time: 4:45 / ET
Wladimir Klitschko: (55-3, 49 KOs), IBF, WBO Heavyweight Champion
Height: 6-6, Weight: 242 pounds
David Haye: (25-1, 23 KOs), WBA Heavyweight Champion
Height: 6-3, Weight: 212 ½ pounds
On Klitschko: Klitschko is a big man who knows how to use that size to his advantage. He’s one of the few fighters in the heavyweight division who actually uses his jab as a primary weapon. Klitschko has taken on all comers, big and small, including Samuel Peter (Twice), Eddie Chambers, Ruslan Chagaev and Hasim Rahman. With his reach and footwork, it’s going to be difficult for David Haye to get inside and close. If Klitschko allows Haye inside, his suspect chin makes him vulnerable to an early knockout.
On Haye: Haye talks a lot, but he’s backed it up since becoming a legitimate heavyweight four years ago. He climbed the ladder quick with wins over Monte Barrett, Nikolay Valuev, John Ruiz and Audley Harrison. But none of those opponents has the combination of size, footwork and hand speed of Klitschko. Haye needs to get inside early and force Klitschko off his game. If Klitschko settles in and starts throwing the jab with success, Haye can forget about it.