Klitschko promises to knock Haye "back into reality"

BERLIN Mon Jun 27, 2011 11:42am EDT

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BERLIN (Reuters) - Reigning WBO, IBF and IBO world heavyweight champion Vladimir Klitschko promised Briton David Haye would be a better person after he was through with him in their title fight Saturday.

Speaking at a news conference before Saturday's fight at Hamburg's soccer arena, Ukrainian Klitschko, who had to wait some 30 minutes for Haye, said he would "treat" the WBA champion for his big mouth.

"My name is Dr Klitschko, I am a therapist and on July 2 I am going to give you treatment. It is going to be reality rehab."

"I will knock you out into reality, which will be good for your life," Klitschko told reporters as Haye looked on. "You will be a better person and have better manners."

The 35-year-old Klitschko and his older brother Vitaly, who holds the WBC belt, twice had fights with Haye called off in the past two years after they failed to agree on the details for the much-awaited unification fight.

The 30-year-old Briton, who has repeatedly mocked the brothers, saying they only picked weak opponents until now, has a career record of 25-1 with 23 knockouts. Klitschko's record stands at 55-3 with 49 knockouts.

Haye pledged Klitschko's career as world champion would be ended violently by a fighter whose speed was "ridiculous."

"It is going to be fun to watch this robot malfunctioning. That is what's going to happen," Haye said.

"I am healthy, the speed is ridiculous, the punch power is there. I am just in a really good place."

(Writing by Karolos Grohmann, editing by Pritha Sarkar)

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