Dillian Whyte To Fight On Home Soil For The First Time in Two Years
It appears top heavyweight contender Dillian Whyte (28-2, 19 KOs) is ready to get back in the ring. According to promoter Eddie Hearn, Whyte’s next fight will be on October 30 at the O2 Arena in London, England. What has not been decided is an opponent. The CEO of Matchroom Boxing gave some insight on who that could be during an interview with the UK media source, Talksport.
“With everything opening up, it’s the opportunity for him to fight at the O2 again. It’s been over two years since he’s boxed in the UK in front of fans. Chris Arreola is probably the frontrunner.”
The last time Whyte was in the ring, he scored a fourth-round stoppage over former WBA world “regular” heavyweight champion Alexander Povetkin in Gibraltar in March of 2021. It was sweet revenge for the fighter nicknamed “Body Snatcher”. In August 2020, Povetkin scored one of the upsets of that year as he defeated Whyte by a shocking fifth-round KO.
Should Whyte end up facing Chris Arreola (38-7-1, 33 KOs), it would qualify as a decent match, on paper. The former world heavyweight title challenger is entertaining, if nothing else, and loves to go to war. Arreola proved he has a little gas left in the tank in his previous outing against former unified world heavyweight champ Andy Ruiz. Though he lost by unanimous decision, the 40-year-old did give Ruiz problems early and was competitive throughout.
WILL THE PUBLIC BUY IT?
Here’s the thing. Would a Whyte-Arreola contest captivate the attention of the fans? Whyte is popular in the UK, and yes, the British fanbase there would love to see him fight on home soil again. However, he would be facing an Arreola who has lost three of his last five fights, and two consecutively. Observers do not view him as an elite fighter at this point in his career. Nonetheless, according to Eddie Hearn, this would be the exact kind of fight that would boost the marketability of Whyte.
“That’s the fight I like because Arreola brings a war every time he fights. He just had a great fight with Andy Ruiz, and Dillian wants to fight Andy Ruiz. So, that would be a good statement to fight him.
Fights like Arreola that will be picked up on a significant level in America are gonna keep pushing his profile and pushing the fact that he deserves a shot at the world title”.
Whyte’s ultimate goal indeed is to get a long-awaited world title shot next year. While Arreola’s name still has some cache, it’s more than reasonable to question whether a fight against him would be considered a profile booster. A good fight? Possibly. Will the hardcore heads and pundits gravitate towards this match? It’s highly questionable at this point.
By: Michael Wilson Jr.