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Klitschko vs Haye: Talks With Vitali Are Real, 50-50 Split Not Part of Deal, Says Haye

David Haye (seen here in November) is talking with Vitali Klitschko about a fight in March. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
David Haye (seen here in November) is talking with Vitali Klitschko about a fight in March. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
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Scott Christ is the managing editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2006.

David Haye tells BBC's Hardtalk that talks to stage a "comeback" fight with WBC heavyweight titlist Vitali Klitschko are real, but that nothing is definite yet:

"I haven't seen a contract but there's definitely talks going on," he told the BBC's Hardtalk programme. "I said before I retired I would love that fight and there's a date in March that's already been talked about."

He added: "I said I'd want to fight Vitali, the big brother of Wladimir, who beat me in my last fight. They're the only guys I'd consider coming out of retirement for."

Right now it looks like Vitali vs Haye will be going forward as a big March fight. Haye, 31, "retired" a few weeks ago, and then pretty much immediately went into talks with Klitschko, which he had said all along he'd be interested in doing, and which Vitali said back in July he still wanted to do.

So why did Haye ever announce a retirement at all? Attention, mostly. He loves attention. Also, it gives him some kind of ultra-bogus "comeback from retirement" angle for the fight, which at least gives him something to hype since his performance against Wladimir in July was so miserable and universally panned to the point I don't think many would have cared if he'd fought again at all.

[ Related: Adam Booth on Haye's Recent Sparring Attempts ]

But I do like this fight. Haye's still a better fighter than, well, just about anybody else out there. Being awful against the Klitschkos hasn't stopped a lot of other guys from continuing to fight, and Haye is visible enough that he can turn a crummy loss to one into a fight with the other.

Haye also says that he's not even thinking about chasing a 50-50 split this time:

"The last bout was a 50/50. This time I don't deserve that. I don't have a title, but what I do bring is excitement and I bring a value - but I don't believe it's 50/50."

What Haye believes his value is might be a sticking point. You will recall that one of the reasons he avoided fighting the brothers for so long was he felt their contracts were ridiculous. I do expect he can get this fight for better money than he can get from anyone else, and maybe with just a straight rematch clause should he win.

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