Boxing Expert & Pundit
Bellew vs Haye 2: David Haye must be ready to go to 'dark places' to beat Tony Bellew, says Paulie Malignaggi
Last Updated: 03/05/18 9:54am
Paulie Malignaggi believes David Haye holds power, speed and stamina advantages over Tony Bellew but must prove he can match the Liverpool native’s will and desire.
The bitter rivals meet at a sold-out O2 in London on Saturday, live on Sky Sports Box Office, with Haye looking to exact revenge for his defeat to Bellew in March last year, when he was stopped by the Liverpudlian after injuring his Achilles.
A slimmed down Haye insists he has learned lessons from their first encounter and he plans to force their fight "as long as it can go" as opposed to hunting for an early knockout.
Bellew has said this week that Haye will be playing into his hands by coming in at a lighter weight this time around but Malignaggi puts that down to pre-fight mind games.
"I think that is Tony trying to get into David's head. I think he is trying to make David doubt the game plan," Malignaggi told Sky Sports News.
"By Tony saying that, maybe it will make David think 'Wow, is he right? Will it be easier for Tony if I am closer to his size?'
"But David Haye was knocking out cruiserweights badly. He had some highlight reel knockouts even in the cruiserweight division.
"I think the lighter weight for David probably benefits him because he will have the firepower but he will also have the stamina and the speed advantage as well.
"Tony is guy who likes to go to that dark place and take you to that dark place to see if you can come out of it unscathed.
"David has not really liked to go to those places in his career. That is really the key issue.
"I think early on David Haye is dangerous but the later the fight goes we will see if David's new-found stamina can help him or if Tony takes him to those dark places again."