And it's not just Valuev and Chagaev. Despite literally hundreds of channels on TV, pick any two of the seemingly endless list of heavyweights from the former Soviet Union - Valuev, Chagaev, Alexander Povetkin, Oleg Maskaev, Alexander Dimitrenko, Sergei Liakhovich, Taras Bidenko, Vladimir Virchis, Oleg Platov, Timor and Sultan Ibragimov, Denis Boytsov (the list goes on and on) - and you'd be hard-pressed to find a single station in the U.S. that would carry the fight. Even Wladimir Klitschko - who is much more talented that any of the preceding group - is very content to fight conservatively and win rounds against fighters he could knock out if he elected to fight aggressively. Among heavyweights from the former Soviet Union, only Vitali Klitschko competes with a passion that endears him to fight fans.
Not that the rest of the world is producing entertaining heavyweights either. Eddie Chambers, Samuel Peter, John Ruiz, James Toney, Juan Carlos Gomez, Tony Thompson, Lamon Brewster, Hasim Rahman, Shannon Briggs, Ray Austin, Dominick Guinn and Fres Oquendo aren't exactly known for producing must-see fights. That is why fight fans are so eager to see David Haye and Chris Arreola get title shots. Despite seemingly significant flaws (Haye's size and suspect chin; Arreola's conditioning and suspect defense), they at least promise to deliver the one element missing from the heavyweight scene today - ACTION!
So let Chagaev and Valuev compete for the WBA belt. No one cares. The only heavyweight fights worth putting on your calendar are Wladimir Klitschko vs. David Haye on June 20 and, hopefully, Vitali Klitschko vs. Chris Arreola at some point over the summer. Either that or Arreola against the winner of Wladimir-Haye. Pair them up any way you like but - right now - these are the only four heavyweights that really matter.
Love him or hate him, the sport misses Mike Tyson in a huge way.