Boxing reacts to KO that rocked the world
Dillian Whyte has talked a good game as he attempted to crack into the top of a heavyweight division dominated by the likes of Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua.
So there were more than a few people happy to see him fall - and fall in violent fashion - when the Brit was savagely knocked out in the fifth round of his fight against Alexander Povetkin on Sunday.
Fury, who holds the WBC and lineal titles, had the most on the line when it was revealed Whyte would become the mandatory challenger to his WBC belt if he'd won against the Russian.
After Whyte was felled he offered a cheeky congratulatory message to Povetkin, in which he made sure 32-year-old Whyte was aware he'd just been knocked out by a 40-year-old man.
Joshua's verdict from ringside, where he was working as part of the broadcast, was more subtle but just as cutting as he questioned whether Whyte had the killer instinct to finish the top men in the division after he failed to put Povetkin away despite knocking him down twice earlier in the fight.
"Does Dillian still have that instinct in him? Because the fight was called maximum violence," Joshua asked.
"When he had the opportunity to take him out, I wanted to see that maximum violence … when I smell blood, I go in there to take someone out, but sometimes you can get caught in the exchange.
"But at the end of the day, if you leave it a round or two later, as we've seen there, anything can happen.
"The tactics go out the window. You've just got to remember this is a fight, you've got to take the man out and move on to the next."
One-time heavyweight champ Andy Ruiz was the most direct of Whyte's rivals. "I was so happy that Whyte got his a*** knocked the f*** out," Ruiz said. "Because he doesn't have respect for the fighters - that's what gets me p***ed off."
Ruiz also posted a single emoji after Whyte went down.
😂— AndyRuizjr (@Andy_destroyer1) August 22, 2020
American promoter Bob Arum, who co-promotes Fury, also stuck the boot in. "Dillian Whyte was so busy fighting for his WBC mandatory position that he didn't see Povetkin's uppercut, which knocked him cold on his ass," Arum tweeted.
"Dillian Whyte got what he deserved," he added in an interview with IFLTV. "I was reading statements Whyte was making, how he would do this to Fury and that to Fury … These are heavyweights, they've gotta concentrate completely on the fight they're having, so Whyte got what he deserved."
But Whyte isn't taking the punishment lying down, declaring he was ready for an immediate rematch with Povetkin.
He interrupted an interview being done by his promoter Eddie Hearn to make sure it was happening.
Whyte: "Can we get the rematch in December?"
Hearn: "100 per cent, that's what I'm saying. You all right?"
Whyte: "OK cool. Yeah I'm good, it's one of those things isn't it?"
Hearn: "Totally. He had a good couple of early rounds but you were in total control and in the fourth round he was done."
Whyte: "Exactly, it is what it is. Rematch, let's go. That's what good boxing is about. Thanks Eddie."
Hearn reaffirmed the situation while continuing the interview with Sky Sports.
"We have a rematch clause. We will look to make that at the end of the year. The first thing Dillian said when he came out was 'Get me that rematch, get me that rematch'," Hearn said. "It was a heavy knock down, he's going to have to take his rest."
Originally published as Boxing reacts to KO that rocked the world