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Tony Bellew vs. David Haye II Pick to Win

Tony Bellew vs. David Haye II Fight Preview and Prediction to Win
When: Sunday, December 17, 2017
Where: O2 Arena, London, England
TV: Sky
Weight Class: Heavyweight (12 Rounds)
By Loot, Boxing Handicapper, Lootmeister.com

Tony Bellew, 29-2-1 (19 KOs), Liverpool, England
Vs.
David Haye, 28-3 (26 KOs), London, England

Betting Odds: Tony Bellew (+210), David Haye (-270)

Tony Bellew will take on David Haye in a heavyweight rematch from a bout in March, which Bellew won by TKO in the 11th round. The bout started off without a lot of thrills. Haye injured his Achilles tendon in the 6th round, at which point Bellew took over, hammering Haye through the ropes in the decisive round. It was a big win for the +500 underdog Bellew, but some wonder if he would have enjoyed the same results if not for the injury to Haye. That gives this rematch a little extra intrigue. Haye has since undergone surgery and returned to training.

Bellew, 34, was a big underdog in their first fight. Even though Haye was originally a cruiserweight who later achieved success at heavyweight, Bellew moved all the way up from light heavy and is no body-beautiful at the higher weight. But he has comparable height to Haye and didn't seem particularly overpowered at any time in the fight. While his overall standing in the heavyweight division is iffy, he matches up pretty well with Haye.

The injury to Haye gives Bellew's win a vibe of being fluky in a way. While he certainly benefitted from an untimely and unfortunate injury, one shouldn't just cast it as a pure fluke. It could be more a byproduct of Haye just breaking down and paying the price for all that activity and extra bulk he added to his frame. Entering the first Bellew fight, Haye had boxed a total of eight rounds in the previous five years. And while some of us are reluctant to acknowledge the passage of time, Haye is now 37 years old and not all fighters thrive at that age.

Haye has been a strange case. A cruiserweight who was good enough to unify the belts, he made a splash at heavyweight. But a closer look at his credentials perhaps paint the picture in a different light. In his head, he's a former champion at heavyweight, but that came from a narrow win over a titleholder who no one thought was the real champ in Valuev. Against the real top-dog in Wladimir Klitschko, he stunk up the arena and fought a dishonorable fight, especially considering how hard he talked the fight up in the build-up. He has scored nice wins at this weight, but was he ever really a tip-top heavyweight? Now, he's an aging puncher who is far-removed from his last real success in the squared-circle.

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Bellew is no spring-chicken at 34, but he seems to be fresher than Haye, or at the very least a more-bankable physical presence at this point in time. He's as tough as a two-dollar steak with an abundance of self-belief, which was key in the win over Haye. At 213 pounds, he was loose around the middle and looked anything like a real heavyweight, but was still able to have good stamina and flash the skills that made him a two-division champion in this sport. There is a certain level of savvy he brings into the ring with him, along with a good motor that lets him fight hard for twelve rounds. Again, he has a lot of guts and has always extracted the most he can out of himself. He's never been ultra-reliant on power and is the more-skilled fighter of the two, or at least the more-versatile.

Haye still has some advantages. He has more size and is just a more-robust and explosive athletic specimen. He's the better athlete. But how far does that go in this sport? When you look at most 37-year old multi-champions, you see a veteran with a lot of know-how and the skills built up over a long career. But Haye is still more or less the same guy, a fighter who depends on his power. In between those power shots landing, his work can be uneven. He is in many ways paying for a career that was designed more on financial gain, as opposed to a thoughtful career progression that truly builds a fighter into all he can be. Since 2012, he has not been developing, while taking obscene amounts of time off. And in fights like these, fighters pay the steep cost for having opted for that career trajectory. It's not all his fault, as injuries have been a big part of his unfavorable career path over the better part of the last decade.

Tony Bellew could be pressing his luck, especially in this weight class. He wasn't even that well put-together at cruiserweight. And truth be told, the injury to Haye's leg was a big part of the win. Be that as it may, it's not like he was getting boxed-up prior to Haye's injury. He was hanging in there pretty well. And with only 9 months to recover and get in shape for this fight, is Haye asking too much out of his body at this age? I see Haye having a tiny edge in this rematch, but the odds are again way too congratulatory to the perennially-overrated Haye. I'm taking another gamble on Bellew.

Loot's Pick to Win the Bellew-Haye Rematch: I'm betting on Tony Bellew at +210. Did you know... that you could be wagering on the Bellew vs. Haye II fight at discounted odds? There's a better than good chance that you're laying inflated odds with your book. Stop overpaying TODAY by making the switch to 5Dimes Sportsbook! You will be so glad that you did!

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