Wednesday, December 15, 2010

David Tua Has a Royal Chance At King

David Tua's next opponent, Demetrice King, brings a puncher's chance but little form to their heavyweight showdown in Auckland in the new year.
The 25-year-old American has been confirmed as Tua's comeback fight as the New Zealander recovers from shoulder surgery following his controversial draw with Monte Barrett last July.
King isn't shy, but he's not exceptionally talented either and with similar physical dimensions to the stocky Tua, he should provide an ideal stepping stone on the path back for the Auckland boxer.
"Built like a stubby tree trunk" was the description of King (1.8m and about 110kg) from one American commentator after his loss to respected Fres Oquendo in February. That fight was for the vacant USBA heavyweight title but Oquendo eventually pummelled King into submission – he didn't come out for the 10th round of the scheduled 12-rounder.
King's record since turning pro in 2003 stands at 15 wins and 19 losses from 34 fights. He has won only one of his last five fights– an impressive second-round knockout of rising American-based Tongan Bowie Tupou, who had previously been undefeated. But that was in August last year and he has fought only twice since then.
There are some other credible names in King's history, however. He has fought Michael Grant, Shannon Briggs, Chazz Witherspoon and Kevin Johnson – losing to all four. But he gave Briggs, the former WBO champion, a big scare in their 2005 fight at Madison Square Garden in New York.
In a furious start to the fight, King put Briggs down three times before copping a king-hit himself and being knocked out late in the second round.
King said one punch in that fight gave him the confidence he needed to know he could mix it in big company.
"I hit him with a hook and got him to wobble," he said of rocking Briggs. "When I saw that, I knew I had the power to hang with these guys. It most definitely made me feel like I want to go further."
King hasn't been able to push. But he has never lacked confidence. He has unsuccessfully chased Tua's nemesis, Hasim Rahman, for a fight over the past 18 months. Now he gets to step into the ring with Tua instead.
The fight is in Manukau on March 19 and is being tagged as "David Tua's Backyard Brawl". It is being promoted by former All Black Inga Tuigamala.
The fight is the last on Tua's restrictive deal with Maori Television. If he can achieve a convincing victory he will be free to chase more lucrative fights that will include pay per view deals in New Zealand.

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