Yet another boxing Hall of Famer is dusting off his gloves and returning to the ring, whilst Dillian Whyte gets ready for a blockbuster heavyweight showdown. It’s been another busy week in the world of boxing, here are five stories you might have missed...
Oscar De La Hoya Announces Boxing Comeback At 47
Six-weight world champion Oscar De La Hoya is, at the age of 47, set to follow in the footsteps of Mike Tyson and Roy Jones Jr in returning to the ring once again, with the ‘Golden Boy’ willing to take on “any top guy out there.”
De La Hoya, an Olympic gold medallist at the 1992 Games in Barcelona, last fought in 2009 when he was defeated by Manny Pacquiao. But the American fighter, regarded as the 13th best boxer of all-time pound-for-pound by Boxrec, told ESPN that he’s coming back to fight properly, not just in an exhibition like Tyson and Jones.
"The rumours are true, and I'm going to start sparring in the next few weeks.
"It's a real fight. I miss being in the ring, I love boxing. Boxing is what gave me everything I have today, and I just miss it.
"Look, it's been a long time, yes. But actually my jab feels faster than ever.”
Roy Jones Threatens To Pull Out Of Mike Tyson Clash
Roy Jones Jr and Mike Tyson might have inspired Oscar De La Hoya to pull on the gloves once more and re-enter the ring, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that we’ll actually get to see the much-anticipated match between two former heavyweight champions, with Jones threatening to pull the plug on the bout, after the bout was pushed back 11 weeks from September 12 to November 28.
Speaking exclusively to the Daily Mail, Jones said that he was consulting with his lawyers over the switch which has left him at a loose end:
“I’ve had to cancel other stuff to be out here, it’s upset my calendar, I’ve got to change things,” he explained.
“That’s why we have to table bulls**t now. That’s the biggest issue, I’m not a full time boxer anymore so I do other things to make an income. If I can’t do other things then I should be compensated for that, because it changes the schematics. It’s not acceptable.”
Tyson Fury Could Host A UK Version Of ‘The Contender’
Fans of The Contender, a boxing reality TV show that ran between 2005 and 2018 in the US, can rejoice as it is reportedly set to come to the UK with our very own Tyson Fury hosting it.
The original, which was hosted by the likes of Sylvester Stallone, Sugar Ray Leonard and Andre Ward, followed a different group of boxers each season as they competed with one another in an elimination-style competition to see who came out on top. According to BoxingScene, representatives of “The Contender” are holding meetings with BBC officials this week to discuss a deal with the BBC said to be particularly keen to get a larger-than-life personality like Fury on board.
WBC Orders Canelo Vs Avni Yildirim
If you listened carefully enough you probably would have heard the collective groan from the boxing community as Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez’s long, long search for an opponent eventually landed on Turkey’s Avni Yildirim, with the two set to fight for the WBC super-middleweight title,
Yildirim has a 21-2 (12) record and notably lost the two biggest fights of his career so far, to Anthony Dirrell last year and in stunning fashion to Chris Eubank Jr in 2017. Canelo holds the WBC 'franchise' title at middleweight, while Yildirim is the mandatory challenger to the super-middleweight title which became vacant last weekend when David Benavidez was stripped of the belt for failing to make weight.
Unsurprisingly, this has irked many, including Britain’s Billy Joe Saunders who was himself mooted to face Canelo this year, who took to Twitter to write: "Didn't see Canelo wanting the WBC when David Benavidez had it a week ago. Cherry picker."
Dillian Whyte Takes Aim At Tyson Fury
Dillian Whyte might be gearing up for this weekend’s heavyweight showdown with Alexander Povetkin at Eddie Hearn’s Fight Camp but he’s still found time to take some shots at Tyson Fury, whose WBC belt Whyte has been mandatory for for over 1000 days now.
Whyte has consistently been pushed back in his hopes for a shot at the title and has accused ‘the Gypsy King’ of not doing more to make the fight happen. Speaking to Sky Sports Whyte said: "Do you think Tyson Fury cares? Tyson Fury don't care,"
"He used to say he was the lineal heavyweight champion, he let the public think he is, but he does what he wants to. Tyson Fury doesn't care.”
Elsewhere, Whyte’s bitter rival Anthony Joshua will also be in attendance for Whyte’s bout with Povetkin as he takes on punditry duties for Sky Sports. Things could get heated ringside should Whyte win this weekend.