Tony ‘The Bomber’ Bellew has forever been doubted during his career, but time and time again he has stepped between the ropes and continued his rise to the top, proving the plethora of haters wrong each and every time. From fighting for the WBC cruiserweight world title against Ilunga Mukabu at his beloved Everton Football Club’s home stadium, Goodison Park, in front of a packed out arena of loyal scousers, to a gutsy display against former heavyweight champion David Haye. Both times he was the underdog going into the huge fights, especially against a powerful and skillful David Haye, but both times he emerged victorious via a TKO.
Known for his integrity and fighting with his heart on his sleeve, The Bomber has formerly been a Commonwealth and British light-heavyweight champion, European cruiserweight champion and is now currently the reigning and defending WBC cruiserweight titleholder. With only two losses on his record, one to highly rated Welshman Nathan Cleverly who is now the WBA light-heavyweight champion, a defeat which he has since avenged, and another to big-punching, highly-skilled Adonis Stevenson.
Now 34 years old and with a money-churning profile attached to his name, he’s only going to be involved in those colossal clashes. So, unless he decides to secure another acting role, what are the options for his next venture as a dark horse?
Since his advance in weight to challenge, and defeat David Haye in a highly anticipated grudge match, Tony Bellew has opened up many doors within the heavyweight division. Having stated that he would cherish a shot at the heavyweight world title, and with the vast majority of people, including Bellew himself, believing Parker possesses the weakest attributes and the smallest frame out of the existing champions, this may be a viable option. Although Bellew may see this as a golden opportunity to secure a prestigious heavyweight belt and create a lasting legacy within the sport of boxing, Parker has still not defended his WBO title against highly talented Hughie Fury. Parker is scheduled to fight mandatory challenger, Fury, on September 23 in his hometown of Manchester.
Should Parker successfully preserve his heavyweight champion status, there may be a relatively clear journey for Bellew to embark on. On the other hand, if Hughie Fury follows in his cousins rather large footsteps and becomes heavyweight champion of the world, would Bellew consider a potential clash with the fellow Brit?
Having already seen eye-to-eye on the set of ‘Creed’, Bellew has already had the chance to size up Andre Ward. Although Ward being arguably the number one, pound for pound king of boxing, Bellew clearly fancies his chances and believes he’d be too big and strong for the light-heavyweight champion, and would relish the opportunity to fight in legendary Las Vegas. Following his successive victories over another pound for pound star, Sergey Kovalev, Ward has cemented his place in boxing folk-law, so now wants the toughest challenges the sport has to offer, which is where the talk of an encounter with The Bomber arose from.
Although the two teams are reportedly in talks, this fight may be a little bit far-fetched according a large number of fans and pundits within boxing. Andre Ward was an established super-middleweight, who then enhanced his career by dominating the light-heavyweight division, so even though he has stated as much, would he genuinely want to fight a cruiserweight that has recently been up at heavyweight?
In the opinion of the masses connected to boxing, the David Haye rematch is the one that makes most sense, both for the exhilarating entertainment for the fans and financially for both fighters. Tony Bellew defied all the odds in their first fight; The Hayemaker predicted a stoppage victory within the first few rounds and everyone else seeming to agree with that prediction, but it unfolded in an extremely different fashion. Despite landing flush bombs on the chin of Tony Bellew, Haye couldn’t take him out, but Bellew boxed smart and inspiringly, and then former Heavyweight champion of the world ruptured his Achilles tendon in the sixth round and had his corner throw the towel in five rounds later.
Yes, this fight would be an exciting date to mark on the calendar if it was to happen, but negotiations would definitely be difficult once again. Last time, Haye made all the demands, but this time the shoe would be on the other foot, and Haye would have to accept Bellew’s terms. Now, whether Haye is prepared to do that is questionable, but I do believe he wants to avenge that loss he dramatically suffered.