David Haye fought plenty of the sport’s biggest names and has found it hard to pick out the best he faced.
Haye’s career had several chapters, starting with his time as cruiserweight. He turned professional in December 2002, aged 22, and just six years later he had become the unified 200lbs world champion.
He held three of the four major world titles as well as the Ring magazine belt and was ranked as the best cruiserweight on the planet between 2005 and 2007.
In that time he beat the likes of unified champion Jean-Marc Mormeck and and Enzo Maccarinelli before moving up to heavyweight in 2008. He won his first world title from WBA champion Nikolai Valuev and defended against John Ruiz before later coming unstuck against Wladimir Klitschko in 2011.
He went on to fight Derek Chisora and won via fifth-round stoppage before retiring and then coming back in 2015, ending his career for the second time with two back-to-back loses to Tony Bellew in 2017 and 2018.
Speaking to The Ring, he has explained who was the best he fought and is split between Valuev and Klitschko.
“Either Wladimir Klitschko or Valuev, one of those two. I’d love for them to have fought each other. I’d love to have seen how Wladimir would have dealt with someone a lot bigger than himself.
He always seemed to have the physical advantages over people. It’s a mixture of the two, they’re the two most difficult, they had such physical advantages over me. I was able to implement my plan significantly better against Valuev.
If I fought Wladimir the same night I fought Valuev, I believe the result may have been different. I knew that wasn’t the best of me. It’s very close between Wladimir and Valuev. It sounds crazy because I lost to one and beat one, but the fights were at different times in my life. Lots of things were different before both of those fights. To be fair to both of them, I’d say 50-50.”