From a bad kid to a million dollar puncher

In front of an audience of about 200 people, Dillian Whyte raised his arm, delighted with his victory. At Chadwell St Mary’s Club, just 40 miles from Wembley in London, Whyte – then still an amateur – did not receive any remuneration for winning against a highly regarded name – Anthony Joshua. Many people present that day probably did not expect that they were witnessing the two top names of the upper-tier boxing village.

Dillian Whyte and his turbulent childhood

Both Whyte and Joshua turned professional not long after the above match. The Olympic gold medal won helps Joshua have a favorable momentum. “AJ” rose very quickly in the professional arena and once held 3 of the 4 biggest belts in the world heavyweight. On his journey, Joshua successfully avenged Whyte with a KO victory.

Whyte has never had a chance to hold the absolute title, but now holds the temporary WBC title. This weekend, 13 years after his amateur bout with Joshua, Whyte stands before what could be the turning point. After 3 years as the No. 1 candidate, Whyte finally had the opportunity to meet Tyson Fury. The winner of this competition will pocket the absolute WBC belt.

Didn’t stop here. Whyte will also pocket a remuneration of more than $7 million. Winning the match, Whyte also had the opportunity to enter the match to find the absolute champion with the winner of the pair Oleksandr Usyk vs Joshua.

Dillian Whyte: From a bad kid to a million-dollar puncher - Photo 1.

Image of Dillian Whyte in his youth

From 200 fans, this weekend more than 9,000 spectators will be at Wemlbey to watch Whyte play. Of course, Fury is the main star of the confrontation. However, Whyte also has the right to be proud of what he has done.

Chris Okoh, a former cruiserweight champion and retired fighter, worked with Whyte when he faced Joshua in 2009 until 2015. He admits he saw his potential early on. punching the British since the first time we worked together.

“I’ll never forget the first time he trained with a pad,” Okoh told ESPN. “After about 30 minutes of practice, I realized this young man had the strength to become a world champion. I remember reading what Cus D’Amato said when I first met Mike Tyson. I was equally impressed. before Whyte. He is a gem in the rough but has a lot of potential. He has very good jabs and a desire to show off.”

Okoh believes that Whyte’s motivation comes from the fact that this boxer had a childhood of constantly trying. Born in Jamaica, Whyte had to live with relatives when his mother, Jerroleen, moved to England. Whyte admits he has faced temptations in his youth.

Whyte came to England at the age of 12 and a year later became a father. To this day, Whyte remains one of the youngest fathers in British history. Whyte also often got into bad things, was stabbed 3 times and shot 2 times.

“I’ve faced challenges,” admits Whyte. “I used to worry about not being able to live past 20 or going to jail forever. It’s a terrible lifestyle. From having to eat food in the trash to living like this.”

Dillian Whyte: From a bad kid to a million-dollar puncher - Photo 2.

Dillian Whyte went through a difficult time before coming to boxing

Dillian Whyte and the turning point with boxing

And then at the age of 15, Whyte was led to a gym by a friend. From here, Whyte realized his passion. Whyte also realized that the head is something for him and can help himself earn money.

“I was a bad kid on the street. And then, I found kickboxing and MMA, both of which helped me reorient myself. When I learned boxing, I became serious about this sport. I also stayed away from the troubled by being too tired of it.”

Meeting Okoh was also a great thing for Whyte. “Dillian practiced kickboxing with Leroy Harris,” Okoh shared. “They contacted me about boxing coaching for him in 2008. With kickboxing he could make a few hundred pounds but amateur boxing wouldn’t make money. I advised him to calculate the long distance. In In the future, with boxing, he can pocket a lot more money. He listens to me and fights for Chadwell’s room.”

Okoh was also the contact for Whyte to have the opportunity to compete with Joshua in 2009. “It’s not easy to find an opponent worthy of Whyte but they say there is a kid who is training at Finchley who is also very good. And so. , we set up a bet for the two to face each other.”

Dillian Whyte: From a bad kid to a million-dollar puncher - Photo 3.

Dillian Whyte will face Tyson Fury this weekend

It was the 17th match of the event. Joshua and Whyte fought three rounds of two minutes each in a modestly-capacity venue. Whyte played overwhelmingly and had a knockdown situation in the second half. In the end, Whyte won by score.

Whyte turned professional in 2011 but a year later was found to be positive for a banned substance. Whyte claimed to accidentally get doping by buying an energy drink in the store. Whyte was stripped of his license and was only able to return in November 2014.

While waiting for the expiration of the ban, Whyte tries to maintain training. Okoh successfully arranged for Whyte to practice with Tyson Fury. The two did not respect each other.

“It was 2013 and Tyson was living in Belgium at the time,” Okoh recalls. “We had 10 days of Tyson training. The first session was very hot. I was impressed by both. Dillian knocked Tyson down with a left kick to the liver. Tyson fell to his knees but got up quickly. knocking Tyson down another time but I did not witness this situation.

The training session with Tyson was fiery. In the first session, we practiced 4 rounds and extended to the following days. Dillian also trained with David Price, the Klitschko brothers. He’s used to fighters with better physiques.”

Okoh had an accident and was unable to support Whyte when the puncher met Joshua again in 2015. Whyte then turned to his new teacher Johnathon Banks. Whyte lost KO to Joshua and had to wait another 7 years for a chance to fight for a perfect belt.

Now Okoh has switched to a job as a delivery man in a supermarket. He will be watching Tyson Fury vs Dillian Whyte this weekend as a spectator. He believes Whyte’s winning hand is 50-50.

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