Terence Dooley reports today that Adam Booth, the trainer of WBA heavyweight titlist David Haye, feels Vitali Klitschko is easy to beat, and ripped his performance yesterday against Kevin Johnson.
"It was a typical Vitali performance," bemoaned Booth. "He does the same thing over and over again and everybody that he fights is unable to pose a question of his style. He plants his feet in range, uses his height to lean back out of the way of hitting coming back that may have substance on it and uses his strong arms to push so repetitively. He does the same thing every second of every round of every fight and it amazes me that these so-called elite heavyweights cannot figure out that there is a simple answer to that style to be able to land your punches."
Haye, of course, had the chance to fight Vitali on September 26, and instead fought Nikolai Valuev in November. He also could have fought Wladimir Klitschko in June, but he pulled out of that, too.
It's no secret that if Haye gets past mandatory challenger John Ruiz, a fight between Haye and one of the Klitschkos is about as interesting as it's going to get for the division. On that count, I can't find any fault with Haye and Booth continuing to smack talk the Klitschkos. It's likely an inevitability that they meet, and if they don't, well, it's also almost certain that it'll be because Haye chickened out, for lack of a better term.
I do think Vitali is beatable -- and Booth just may have the fighter to do it. Vitali was stiff and immobile again on Saturday, much like he was earlier this year in a pure stinker against Juan Carlos Gomez. Both Gomez and Johnson didn't engage, either, but it's easy to tell when Vitali isn't loose out there. He plods, his punches come from just his arms, and that sort of attack would make him quite susceptible to someone with Haye's speed and power, at least in theory.
I do hope we find out one way or the other in 2010 whether Haye can handle the Klitschkos. Either one or both of them. It's about the only thing left in the heavyweight division I have true interest in, to be honest.