As World Boxing News lead contributor Dan Rafael first revealed, heavyweight Evander Holyfield is considering an offer from Triller to replace Oscar De La Hoya.
After contracting coronavirus and being subsequently hospitalized, De La Hoya had to withdraw from his September 11th comeback with Vitor Belfort.
Revealing his battle with the virus, De La Hoya said: “Wanted you to hear directly from me. Despite being fully vaccinated, I have contracted Covid.
“I am not going to be able to fight next weekend. Preparing for this comeback has been everything to me over the last months.
“I want to thank everyone for their tremendous support.”
Within hours, news circulated that Holyfield could step in to fight Belfort. This scenario comes about despite Holyfield launching arbitration against Triller for lack of fight action since their agreement.
At the age of 58, 59 in September, Holyfield wants to fight again after a decade-long absence. “The Real Deal” looks in great shape, but those looks firmly can be deceiving.
“I’m 58, but I feel like I’m 28,” said Holyfield. “My health and my conditioning is very important to me, and I make sure it’s a priority daily.
“A healthy mind and body is a recipe for longevity and happiness.”
It’s no secret that Holyfield’s speech has been affected by the sheer amount of wars the man waged inside the ropes. He was one of the ultimate warriors of boxing.
But that was twenty years ago. Even during the latter part of the former world champ’s ring tenure during his mid to late forties, Holyfield was nowhere near the fighter he once was.
Therefore, putting him in the ring with anybody, let alone a man who is 15 years his junior, is completely nuts on the face of it.
There’s no denying that Holyfield is in great shape for a man of his advanced years. But we aren’t talking about his ability to go four or six rounds here.
We’re stating that anyone taking heavyweight punches approaching your sixties is shameful, wrong, and a complete disgrace if it goes ahead.
At least put headgear on the pair if this crazy plan gets put into action for nothing more than the almighty dollar. If Holyfield gets badly hurt or his life gets altered for the rest of his days, would any amount of money be worth that?
It’s a medical fact that the brain deteriorates faster the older you get. Shipping considerable blows to the head would be inadvisable to anyone at that age.
If this goes ahead, it’s wreckless endangerment of the boxer – at the very least. But knowing Holyfield, he’s probably already signed the waiver so that he can fight again.
And knowing Evander even more so, he probably still thinks he can become world champion. He’s that kind of competitor.
We wish him well, but please stop the madness.
The views expressed in this article are opinions of Phil Jay.