Dillian ‘the Body Snatcher’ Whyte forced his way onto the top table of heavyweight boxing at the end of 2015. It was on the 12th December when the war between him and now World Champion Anthony Joshua, but his profile had already risen before he made his ring walk. The way he had handled himself in the run up to the fight had perfectly highlighted what he brings to the division.
Prior to this fight Whyte had developed a reputation. He had won all of his 16 fights and was on a run of 12 fights he had stopped before the final bell had rung. Dominant form was not the only reason this fight was on fire from the beginning. National hero Joshua had suffered a defeat against ‘the Body Snatcher’ in the amateur ranks. Sometimes in boxing rivalries are manufactured to sell tickets and the pay per view television shows. This one certainly was not. It was genuine. Just thinking back to the Sky programme ‘The Gloves Are Off’ gives you shivers. It was 24 minutes of intense mind games fuelled by a wealth of emotions. The fight did not disappoint either. Whyte troubled the Olympic gold medallist and took him deeper into a fight than ever before. Joshua came back from an early wobble, Whyte’s shot landing while Joshua’s early assault took place, to score a knock-out victory in the seventh round. To date Whyte’s only defeat.
Whyte took time off after this fight due to a shoulder injury, something he believes effected his ability to go for the kill against AJ. He came back on the Joshua Dominic Breazeale under card where he broke down Croatian Ivica Bacurin finishing him the sixth round. Whyte followed this up with a convincing points victory over David Allen. It was pretty straight forward for Whyte and the build up again was intense, with the pair exchanging words often. A tenth round victory against Ian Lewison claimed the British title for the Jamaican born fighter. These three fights, which came over four months, began to erode the memories of his first defeat. He now had a British title and a winning streak again.
Whyte would now face one of boxing’s bad boys. Dereck Chisora. It was a World title eliminator for the WBC belt held by Deontay Wilder. The fight was once again on Joshua’s under card when he faced Eric Moilna. The build up was memorising. The pair both fond of mind games did not disappoint. Tables and glasses of water were thrown in each others direction and the trash talk was of the highest quality. Johnny Nelson looked terrified hosting the pair for a round the table chat. Like the fight that made Whyte’s reputation boom, the high quality and entertaining build up did not overshadow what happened when the fighters came face to face in the squared circle. It was a true battle. Both fighters brought everything they had and by the twelfth and final round neither man had much left in the tank. Whyte took the fight on a split decision in a fight that could have easily gone the other way. Whyte just edged it due to having superior stamina. Chisora’s work rate dropped early which gave Whyte large periods of the fight to take control and impose his style of the boxing. When Chisora backed Whyte up he looked dangerous, but Whyte hung on. It was marvellous to see both fighters earn each others respect. Even if it has not lasted that long as the trash talking started again soon after.
‘The Body Snatcher’s’ best fights in his career have come when there has been heated exchanges before the contest. This is why he is vital not just for the heavyweight division but also boxing in general. While Joshua against Wladimir Klitschko was a mega fight and the in ring action was second to non it lacked a little in build up. Both boxers are nice guys who respected each other. The needle in the build up was not present. While this may be a bad example because the pedigree of boxing talent and power of boxing’s top division sold the fight, it still felt as though something was lacking. It is hard to imagine Whyte being so polite to opponents before a fight.
Whyte’s name is being offered forward to fight for World championships. First to be called out by the London based boxer was WBO champion Joseph Parker. It was off the back of Parker’s defence against late replacement Razvan Cojanu. He won by a wide margain but many expected a short nights work for New Zealand’s heavyweight star. With the match against Hughie Fury being rearranged and announced Whyte’s hope for this fight have gone. It could be considered the best chance for Whyte to win a World title. Saying that it is hard to think that Whyte would ever back down from anyone and when he does get in the ring he pushes all of his opponents to their limits.
Talk on twitter has now shifted to Wilder. Wilder has been offered the fight but on instagram stated he wanted even more money. The offer from Matchroom Boxing would be Wilder’s biggest pay day to date. Raising the question, why is he not itching to sign the deal? Wilder is a beast in the ring holding an unbeaten professional record of 38 wins with 37 knock-outs. Why would he run from Whyte? Because he offers something completely different than any other fighter in the division. He is a bully in and out of the ring. He has an unbreakable mentality that helps him envisage victory even if the odds are stacked against him.
— Dillian Whyte (@DillianWhyte) 23 June 2017
(@DillianWhyte – on Twitter)
Could Whyte claim the title from Wilder if they fight? Of course he could. Would he be favourite? Certainly not. Would that stop him giving everything he could in an attempt to overthrow the ‘fake champion’ (his words not ours)? Most definitely he would.
Whatever happens in the near and more long term future for Dillian Whyte one thing is for sure. It will be exciting. He does not do respect and he certainly does not do boring. While he may not be the highest rated boxer in the heavyweight division you have to give him a chance against any of the top prospects. He will never give up and will always believe his ability is greater than his opponents. He is a dangerous fight for anybody, hence why Wilder is unwilling to sign the contract to fight him. In terms of entertainment inside and outside the ring Whyte has to be one of the best in the world. Boxing needs fighters like ‘the Body Snatcher’.