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Jimi Manuwa says Dana White will greenlight boxing match with David Haye in 2017

MMA: UFC Fight Night-Manuw vs Anderson Steve Flynn-USA TODAY Sports

Conor McGregor isn’t the only UFC fighter looking to crossover to the boxing ring this year. Light heavyweight title contender Jimi Manuwa, who is coming off a first-round knockout of Corey Anderson back in March, is also pushing for a superfight with British boxer David Haye. Rumors have swirled about the two locking horns sooner rather than later, but now there seems to be significant movement in the fight actually being booked in 2017.

“I spoke to David Haye today (Wed., April 26, 2017),” said Manuwa in a recent interview with BJ Penn Radio.. “I spoke to him last week when I was in Vegas with Dana [White], and Dana liked the numbers—what can be generated through this event. We’re planning on making it happen. David Haye is out and about walking, he’s back walking now after his injury. We’re doing everything we can to make it happen.”

While Manuwa vs. Haye would fit nicely on the undercard portion of a McGregor vs. Floyd Mayweather superfight card, the latter matchup is far from being worked out. But that doesn’t mean “Poster Boy” isn’t holding out hope to fight on the same card.

“Possibly,” added Manuwa. “But we’re big enough to do our own card as well in London. It depends when the Conor – Floyd fight happens. If it’s in September I think that would be too early for David Haye. I think he’ll be ready November or December. So a September card would be too early for him. We’ll see what happens. We’ve got options.”

Considering Jon Jones is going to get the next crack at UFC light heavyweight champion Daniel Cormier, this is perfect timing for Manuwa to step outside the Octagon, challenge a proven boxer and growing rival, and further expand his combat brand before he challenges for a UFC title.

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