Tyson Fury has responded in typically aggressive manner to news of David Haye’s withdrawal from their Feb. 8 collision, mocking his compatriot before calling for fights with Wladimir Klitschko and Deontay Wilder.
However, Dereck Chisora might emerge as Fury's most likely next rival, after promoter Frank Warren threw up the suggestion of a rematch, per Declan Warrington of the Daily Mail:
It’d be a brilliant fight. It’s the next best thing after Haye-Fury. Dereck’s resurrected his career – he’s fighting two stone lighter than when he fought Tyson last time out. I think it’d be a great fight for the fans.
We could make it the same date – it doesn’t matter, really, because obviously it wouldn’t be a Sky show. That’s irrelevant, but if we could do it it’d be a great fight.
Haye is currently unsure if his career is over after he was forced to undergo surgery on his shoulder. He tweeted the following picture from a hospital ward:
Fury, though, took no pity on his heavyweight rival, sending out the following on Twitter (WARNING: NSFW language):
The cancelled fight is a huge blow to Fury, who has now seen his bout with Haye scrapped on two occasions. Fury has been inactive since April 2013 and will only have lost ground on his rivals during that time.
A win over a name like Haye would have propelled him into the heavyweight division’s big league. It also would have netted him the biggest payday of his career in front of a gripped UK audience.
The fact that such an opportunity—and time period—has been wasted will now be investigated by promoter Mick Hennessy, who may seek financial recompense, per Jeff Powell of the Daily Mail:
We are considering our legal position with regards the cost of all this. There has been a bad smell about this fight from the start. Even watching Haye when he's had to be around Tyson we got the impression that something was wrong.
He's always been wary of big men and in my view was particularly worried because Tyson couldn't care less about him and his threats.
In my view I can't understand why, having pulled out once, he asked for the fight to be put back on, only to then undergo shoulder surgery. Where has that come from? In my view it might just be, simply, that he's bottled it.
The irony is that, had the two men met, it is likely Fury would have had every reason to be the one running scared.
Although taller, Fury would have lacked the speed and boxing nous of his rival. Haye has also taken a full-blooded punch from Klitschko without hitting the mat, whereas Fury has been no stranger to the canvas in his career.
He remains unbeaten, though, and such an unblemished record gives him great cause for confidence. Fury’s chin is questionable, but his heart and ability to recover quickly—as shown in his last outing with Steve Cunningham—has to be admired.
It is those qualities that prompt Fury to believe he could beat Klitschko, although the injury to Haye means he is still far from booking that fight:
In order to line up a world title collision, Fury tweeted on Monday that Wilder is likely the only man brave enough to share the same ring:
No official mention of a fresh opponent for Fury has been made, and it is highly unlikely his camp will find anybody worthy of the mass audience that had bought tickets for his clash with Haye.
As for Haye, his immediate future will no doubt see him face many accusations of “ducking” his compatriot, but the more serious reality is he may not fight again. Richard Beech of the Daily Mirror provides the quotes:
I genuinely believed the shoulder injury wasn't that bad. But the doctor sent me for a detailed MRI scan and, within 24 hours, I was told the full extent of the damage. Twenty-four hours after that I was in the operating theatre.
It's a crushing blow for me. I had big plans for next year and the ultimate goal was to win back the world heavyweight title, something my amazing fans deserve …
Perhaps it just wasn't meant to be. The boxing Gods keep hinting that maybe enough is enough and that it's time to finally hang up my gloves.
If he does retire, Haye can console himself with the thought that he ends his career as a former world champion. Whether Fury will be able to say the same is highly questionable.