David Haye believes WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder underestimated Tyson Fury in their instant classic in Los Angeles last December.
Wilder started slowly but worked his way back into the fight in the later rounds, scoring knockdowns in the ninth and 12th rounds to salvage a split draw.
Fury and Wilder are expected to rematch in early 2020 if they both get past their next opponents – the little-known Otto Wallin for Fury and Luis Ortiz in a rematch for Wilder.
Former cruiserweight world champion Haye says he expect Wilder to come in better prepared the second time around.
“I don’t think Wilder rated Fury that much. I don’t think. And I think he underestimated him,” said Haye to BT Sport.
“I know Fury didn’t underestimate Wilder, but there’s arguments why both fighters can win the rematch.
“I’m really excited. I don’t think there’s that many heavyweights that are unbeaten at the moment. I think it’s a pure coincidence.”
Haye was noncommittal when asked who he thought would win the return bout.
“It can go one of two ways. Fury could fine tune his skills, because he’d been out of the game for so long after the [Wladimir] Klitschko fight,” he said.
“A lot of people are saying he’s going to be a lot better now than he was for that fight. The same thing can be said for Deontay Wilder. He’s had a couple of fights.
“His [Wilder] fight against Dominic Breazeale was an absolute cracker of a right hand. I’ve never seen a heavyweight just walk across the ring and put someone’s lights out that quick – and that furiously.
“[Wilder] has a rematch with Ortiz, which is an interesting fight. So I think both fighters are going to be way better for their rematch. Both of them are going to be on form.”
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