In a surprise move, Dillian ‘Body Snatcher’ Whyte (23-1, 17 KOs) will be facing the recently beaten former heavyweight world title challenger Joseph Parker (24-1, 18 KOs) on July 28 on Sky Box Office at the O2 Arena in London, England.
Former IBF welterweight champion Kell Brook is a possibility to fight on the undercard against an opponent still to be determined, according to Matchroom Sport promoter Eddie Hearn. Brook, 31, is expected to fight journeyman Gabriel Rosado, who Hearn is said to have signed recently to his Matchroom Boxing USA stable.
This figures to be a real nightmarish type of fight for Whyte, as Parker is younger, faster, stronger and more mobile. Overall, Parker is clearly the better fighter of the two, which would explain why he was able to go 12 rounds against Anthony Joshua and Whyte just 7. For all intents and purposes, Whyte was a punching bag for Joshua after the 2nd round. In contrast, Parker was taking the fight to Whyte for the full 12 rounds, and he might have beaten him if not for the referee impeding his ability to fight on the inside.
Whyte turned down title eliminators against Luis ‘King Kong’ Ortiz and Kubrat Pulev, and instead will be facing Parker, 26, in a fight that figures to be VERY difficult. However, Whyte will have the hometown advantage in the fight, and that could count for a lot when it comes to the judging of the affair. Whyte, 30, is no stranger to controversial decisions, as he beat Dereck Chisora by a questionable 12 round split decision in December 2016 in a fight that he should have lost. I’m not saying that there will be a royal robbery on July 28, but if I’m New Zealander Parker, I’d be thinking knockout all the way. The only way Parker can do that is to stand his ground and take the fight to the inside to work the slapper Whyte over.
“I’m here to fight and I want to fight, and I want to give the fans nights to remember,” said Whyte. “This is one of them. This is a great fight. Joseph Parker will be hungry, will be motivated, and I just hope that he leaves his running shoes at home on July 28 and comes to fight.”
Former WBO champion Parker lost his last fight to Anthony Joshua by a 12 round unanimous decision last March in Cardiff, Wales. Parker did a very good job against Joshua in going the distance. Unfortunately, we’ll never know if Parker could have beaten AJ or due to the referee that worked the fight, who spent 12 rounds pulling Parker away from Joshua when he would attempt to work on the inside.
Whyte comes into the fight with a 7-fight winning streak. He and his boxing fans are especially excited about his last victory over former WBA heavyweight champion Lucas ‘Big Daddy’ Browne. Whyte stopped the slow, old and out of shape 39-year-old Browne in the 6th round. You can’t really give Whyte much credit for the victory due to Browne being mostly inactive since 2017, and looking out of shape and glacially slow.
I’m not sure that Whyte vs. Parker is a PPV worthy fight. In my opinion, I don’t think it is. Even if Kell Brook is fighting on the undercard, Whyte-Parker is still an atrociously bad fight for Sky Box Office, because Kell is likely going to be facing another tune-up level opponent. If Brook were to be challenging for a world title against WBO junior middleweight champion Jaime Munguia, then I would say the fight card is worthy of PPV, but definitely not if he’s only going to be fighting journeyman Gabriel Rosado.