By Rick Reeno
BoxingScene.com spoke with Bernd Boente, manager of WBO/IBO/IBF heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko (55-3, 49KOs), who explained the situation with the David Haye (25-1, 23KOs) negotiations and the rescheduled rematch with Dereck Chisora (14-0, 9KOs).
The negotiations for a unification with Haye, the WBA champion, have been ongoing for the last three weeks. The two sides reached an ageement on all of the major issues, but faced a big problem with setting a date that worked for a potential venue, and both cable networks, Sky Sports in England and RTL in Germany.
According to Boente, the date of April 30 was a workable venue date, and it worked for RTL, but Sky Sports was not willing to do two pay-per-views in the same month. Sky has a pay-per-view scheduled on April 16, with Amir Khan defending the WBA 140-pound title. The opponent has not been finalized for Khan. The British network refused to accommodate Klitschko-Haye. Sky was unwilling to move Khan's fight to another date.
There were no dates in May or June that worked for both networks. The first available date, that works for both networks, and a potential venue - is July 2. Both sides have a tentative agreement to fight on the July date.
Klitschko was scheduled to face Chisora on December 11. He withdrew a few days before the fight with an abdominal injury. The Klitschko camp was contractually bound to a 30-day window to reschedule the fight with Chisora or move forward with another opponent. The deadline was January 6.
Klitschko has not fought since the knockout of Samuel Peter on September 11, and he refused to wait nine months before taking another fight. Wladimir wanted to take a fight prior to meeting Haye. Boente and Frank Warren, promoter for Chisora, agreed to reschedule their fight to April 30.
"We have been in negotiations with Haye's side for three weeks regarding dates and venues in Germany and England but nothing worked. The main point, Sky was not willing to do a second pay-per-view in the same month. They didn't want to move the Khan fight. There were no dates that worked in May or June, so the first available date that worked for everyone was July 2. Sky gave their confirmation this morning," Boente told BoxingScene.com.
"July 2 will be for the Haye fight, but Wladimir is not willing to wait nine months for his next fight. He wants to do the Chisora fight. We have no problem with Haye doing another fight inbetween. Our deadline was always tomorrow to inform Frank Warren about Chisora."