The heavyweight scene in boxing has presented fans with some compelling matchups and Saturday night is no different, as Dereck ‘War’ Chisora (31-9, 22 KOs) faces David Price (25-6, 20 KOs) at the O2 Arena as chief support to the WBA, IBF and WBC junior welterweight unification fight between Josh Taylor and Regis Prograis.
Chisora has had a storied career to say the least, from a post-fight press conference brawl with David Haye, two Fight of the Year contender’s against Dillian Whyte, and the stunning knockout victories over Carlos Takam and Artur Spzilka have provided fans with thrills, spills and most notably the controversy that has followed Chisora throughout his career. This Saturday is no different in the case of Dereck Chisora, as he finds himself in a position where he is one win away from one last huge career showdown, but at the same time a loss would surely be the final nail in the coffin of any world level aspirations he may have left.
In the opposing corner is David Price, whose career outside of Liverpool is viewed by many as that of underachievement and disappointment. Price had a very successful amateur career having won three ABA titles, bronze at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and gold at both the 2006 Commonwealth Games and 2008 EU Championships.
When he turned professional there was so much expectation from the general public most of whom had seen his Olympic predecessor Audley Harrison fail to live up to the hype that surrounded him coming out of the 2000 Sydney Olympics. Price was touted by most to be the next great British heavyweight who would become a world champion.
The journey had started oh so well for Price as he picked up the English, British and Commonwealth titles, defeating John McDermott (28-8) and Sam Sexton (24-4), and then successfully defending them against fellow Olympian Audley Harrison (31-7) and the durable Matt Skelton (28-9). It is at this point fight fans were genuinely starting to believe Price could go on to fulfill his destiny that was until he ran into Tony Thompson (40-7), who soon changed that.
Two back to back stoppages to Thompson put a massive dent in the confidence and career of David Price. There was a period of rebuilding before another surprise loss to Erkan Tepper (20-3). Subsequently both Thompson and Teper tested positive for a banned substance. Price has fought nine times since then, losing to Christian Hammer (24-6), Sergiy Kuzmin (15-1), and then he was conclusively beaten against longtime top-10 fighter Alexander Povetkin (35-2) in what was a thrilling contest that saw Price nearly pick up an invaluable victory.
Price comes into this fight on the back of three victories against Tom Little (10-7), Kash Ali (15-1) and most recently, Dave Allen (17-5-2).
Chisora has stated his desire to share the ring with former cruiserweight king Oleksandr Usyk (17-0), who recently made his heavyweight debut and has stated his intent on capturing heavyweight gold. For Price his career aspirations are more humbling as he has talked about staying either at British or European level with maybe a chance at pushing for world honors if the right fight were to present itself.
The bout on Saturday provides both men with an opportunity to have one last final hurrah in their respective careers, but for the loser surely leaves them contemplating retirement.