Dillian Whyte: Next fight conundrum after brutal Browne KOWritten by Leroy Cleveland
Tonight, heavyweight Dillian Whyte looked impressive in stopping previously unbeaten Lucas Browne in Round 6.
Although Dillian was a solid favorite, few expected Whyte to KO - and in brutal fashion - the rugged, very tough Browne who showed a lot of grit and determination to hang in there as long as he did.
Even prior to tonight, White was the WBC's No.1 heavyweight contender. Given the impressive win, however, Whyte gets a much-needed boost in stock. Tonight's fight was exactly the type of bout his team had hoped for.
Now, Dillian in the conversation with Alexander Povetkin, Tyson Fury and Kubrat Pulev.
Will the WBC force it's champion, Deontay Wilder, to face Whyte next? Or will Wilder fight Anthony Joshua, the WBA/IBF champion in a mega showdown?
It appears promoter Eddie Hearn wants Joshua to fight once more before facing Wilder. Should they follow through with that scenario, Dillian Whyte, who Joshua KO'd in 2015 but clearly had problems with, won't be on Hearn’s short list of opponents. Not only have they already faced each other, Hearn wants Joshua's next fight to be in front of a large American audience and knows Joshua vs Whyte 2 wouldn't sizzle in America.
Should Joshua face someone else prior to accepting Wilder's challenge, Deontay would need an opponent in the interim.
Whyte vs Wilder next?
After surviving a near KO loss to Luis Ortiz in a brilliant display of explosiveness, grit and confidence earlier this month, Wilder's stock surged. He proved he belongs atop the division and that his 40-0, 39 KO record is no fluke. As a result, Team Wilder might view a bout with Whyte as a no-win situation.
Conversely, Whyte's impressive win tonight would make a Joshua vs Whyte fight in the UK bigger and more lucrative than before. In fact, it could serve as the most lucrative fight for both fellas up to this point.
The Million Dollar Question: With a mega showdown with Joshua on the horizon, would Team Wilder allow its man to face an opponent as dangerous as Whyte? If you're Team Wilder, you might be looking for a showcase fight next to help build momentum for the superfight with Joshua.
If Team Whyte can't get Wilder or Joshua next, it should target the winner of May's WBA 'Regular' heavyweight showdown between Manuel Charr and Fres Oquendo. Whyte would be a strong favorite against both guys and would likely add a WBA trinket to his collection.
Former IBF belt-holder Charles Martin would be a good option as would Carlos Takam who would give Dillian a good test but might not be capable of the upset.
For now, Whyte should probably stay away from Povetkin, Ortiz and Dominic Breazeale as bouts with those guys would hve little upside.