Haye vs. Bellew II Confirmed, But Is It Wanted?

Tony 'Bomber' Bellew and David 'Haymaker' Haye first squared off in their eagerly anticipated heavyweight clash back in March, with drama stemming from the first press conference right through to the end of the bout.

There were punches thrown months before the gloves were due to be laced up, and then at the crescendo, it was the Liverpudlian that emerged victorious with an eleventh round TKO. It wasn't straightforward and despite accepting the result on the night, 'Hayemaker' requested a rematch after blaming his ankle injury for the way the bout ended.

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The clash was commercially very successful for a domestic fight with close to 900,000 pay-per-view buys, and the fact that there was an element of doubt meant that both men could cash in on a rematch. Bellew had teased retirement, but now they have confirmed their second meeting at the O2 Arena in London in December.

First and foremost, it is the boxers and their team that will benefit most directly. Both received big paydays in March - a career-best for Bellew - and if they can market the rematch in the right way, it really could set up a comfortable retirement.

Even though it is the Liverpool man that comes in with the upper hand with the victory, the boxing betting odds still have him as an outsider to the former WBA heavyweight champion. Both were decorated cruiserweights, but Haye still garners the kudos for the success he has had in the higher weight class. 

However, when Haye was on an almost four-year hiatus, Bellew was consistently in action, and that could have been where he found his edge last time. Haye returned against sub-par competition and didn't get the rounds under his belt, whereas his foe had been active the whole time. 

To come back from the defeat and still be considered the more threatening man will be music to Haye's ears, and it at least makes the rematch competitive on paper. The powerful hands of the 'Hayemaker' could punish his naturally smaller opponent, but for the early rounds of bout one, he wasn't able to move Bellew as much as he'd promised he would. 

In fact, it wasn't until Haye's ankle injury that the bout picked up in intensity, and that makes you wonder whether fans will be as excited to see a re-run and fork out the PPV prices just before Christmas. 

The run-up to March 4th was fresh, the bout was unpredictable, and the animosity seemed real. Now most of that is lost. Only time will tell whether it brings about the same level of interest, but it's hard to see why it would. 

Bellew is in it for the payday as he has nothing to gain from another win, but Haye can get redemption. There is an angle, it's just whether it's strong enough and whether the first fight showed enough potential to make the proposed December 17th contest worthwhile. 

As the boxers prepare, the fans will vote with their wallets.

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