Boxing Expert & Columnist
David Haye will regret his press conference row with Tony Bellew, says Johnny Nelson
Last Updated: 01/12/16 8:46am
Sky Sports expert Johnny Nelson witnessed the fiery David Haye-Tony Bellew press conference and says one of the bitter rivals struck a psychological blow...
We've seen Tony Bellew get into verbal altercations before, but what was a surprise was David's reaction, which told me that Tony had got under his skin. We have never seen David Haye ever react like that.
One time we did a Ringside show with David Haye and Wladimir Klitschko and David didn't want to be in the same studio as Wladimir, because David is cool, he doesn't want to get into that verbal confrontation. But I think Tony got under David's skin and he got to the point where he was ranting and ranting and ranting.
If that was a tennis match, I would score that 15-love to Tony, because he's got David reacting how he wants.
If I was Tony I would have done exactly what he did today, which was get to David and make him dance to my tune, fight my fight, and get into my argument, because that's what I'm used to.
If I was David, I would be my normal cool David self and be laid back and let Tony rant and rave. If that was a tennis match, I would score that 15-love to Tony, because he's got David reacting how he wants. He's got David acting out of character. Even members of Haye's camp had raised eyebrows and were saying 'wow, we're surprised here'.
Hearn: Haye 'out of control'
David Haye was 'out of control' at pre-fight press conference with Tony Bellew, says Eddie Hearn
Tony was saying David was a prima donna, asking for ridiculous things. What David had asked for, nine out of 10 sportsmen ask for silly things, which is part of the gamesmanship. You ask for silly things that you don't even want like water at room temperature, just to get one over your opponent. Tony kind of exposed him on that.
David has obviously got a bee in his bonnet in regard to Eddie Hearn - and in regard to Tony Bellew - so he has reacted. I've done it before. If you can't get to your opponent, you get to his cornerman, because the cornerman will then get to the opponent and his anguish and anger will be put onto the fighter. David attacked the whole team verbally, because he's not going to beat Tony when it gets to verbal exchanges.
David will probably walk away thinking 'damn, I shouldn't have bit, and next time I'll be cool'. But what will happen next time is that Tony will say something else and David will bite again.
Each time, Tony is drawing David into hating him. He's trying to get David to that stage where there is not even a game-plan when they fight, he just wants to go out and smash him. If you've got a man who has no game-plan, he's going to be like a dog on a chain constantly trying to get you and eventually he will tire himself out. That's why you would lean towards Tony, he's done nothing out of character, but David has.
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