The former super middleweight titleholder wants to see Dave Allen build on this past weekend’s win.
British heavyweight Dave Allen had been known as something of a lovable loser going into last Saturday’s fight in London with Lucas Browne. He was popular, everyone liked him for his humor and honesty, but when faced with steps up in competition, he lost.
He lost to Dillian Whyte and Luis Ortiz in 2016, to Lenroy Thomas in 2017, and to Tony Yoka in 2018. Those aren’t bad losses — two genuine world contenders, a former Olympic gold medalist, and, well, OK, Lenroy Thomas — but Allen seemed to have his ceiling, and that was that.
This past weekend, though, he did the job against the 40-year-old Browne, knocking him out in the third round with a body shot. Browne has always been pretty much a one-dimensional fighter, and he’s now older and past his best days, but it was a tremendous moment for the well-liked Allen, a main event at the O2 Arena on Sky Sports and DAZN, and he got his hand raised.
Former super middleweight titleholder-turned-analyst George Groves says he wants to see Allen build from that and stay serious about his career:
“Boxing is a serious sport, I want fighters to take it seriously. ... I hope now that he does, I hope that he gets a taste for it, because there’s good fighters out there that work really hard and never have the opportunities that he’s got. ... Let’s get serious, let’s see your full potential, because otherwise you’re going to look back in years and go, ‘I blew it, I didn’t get what I deserved out of it.’ He’s a fantastic story-teller, he’s funny, he’s engaging, that’s why he’s going to be popular. If he can fight as well, who knows what he can do?”
Allen (17-4-2, 14 KO) wouldn’t seem on paper, at least to some, to have world title shots in his future, but as he put it pre-fight last week, “It sounds ridiculous now, but it’s the truth. You’re only ever three or four wins away from a world heavyweight title shot when you’re already in decent position. Imagine me fighting for a world a title. Madness, isn’t it? But it’s a possibility.”
Allen even laid out his plan, joking a bit but not being unrealistic in the heavyweight division of today: “If I beat Lucas Browne, beat David Price, beat a (Dereck) Chisora or (Joseph) Parker, then I’m fighting Joshua at Wembley, rematch at Keepmoat Stadium 2020 summertime, so we’ll just have to see what happens.”
It would appear that Price (24-6, 19 KO) is next for Allen, possibly on the Whyte-Rivas card on July 20. Both he and Browne said before the fight that Price was mentioned as next opponent for the winner.
“Eddie said to me, ‘If you beat Lucas Browne, you can fight David Price, possibly Dereck Chisora.’ I said, ‘I’ll fight David Price, please,’” Allen said last week.
Price, 35, is best-known for his own potential never being reached. Once thought of as a top prospect, he was devastated by back-to-back losses to Tony Thompson in 2013 and his career just never really recovered. Most recently, he won by DQ over Kash Ali in a fight that drew headlines for Ali’s biting, which Ali was recently suspended and fined over by the British Boxing Board of Control.
Dave Allen’s always going to have the personality he does. It’s who he is, and it’s why he stands to fans out among his peers. But there’s no reason he can’t be Dave Allen and be serious about his career, which is what Groves and many others are hoping to see.