Maloney: Price ready for next piece in puzzle
Promoter Frank Maloney says he is only five fights away from completing David Price's career 'jigsaw' - indicating that a world title fight might be the final piece.
Price's fight ledger only has 15 bouts on it at the moment but the 29-year-old is unbeaten and, under Maloney's guidance, chose his battles well in 2012 to win all four by knockout.
His next opponent, Tony Thompson, represents a considerable step up in pedigree and the chances of Maloney successfully finishing his 'jigsaw' will be more evident after this fight, slated for February 23 at Liverpool's Echo Arena.
Although 41, Thompson is one of the toughest battlers in the heavyweight division and has only been knocked out twice in 39 fights - both times at the hands of Wladimir Klitschko.
Considering Price only fought eight rounds in total during his four fights last year he will be in increasingly unfamiliar territory the longer Thompson can stay on his feet. But Maloney's words hinted that he thinks his man needs more of a challenge and that he would be more than up to it.
"I'm an expert at building heavyweight fights, each fight has to bring something different to the table," Maloney told ESPN's Steve Bunce during his latest podcast. "Every fight I pick, is a gradual step up the ladder. It is like piecing a jigsaw together. I'm about five pieces short of making David Price's jigsaw complete.
"The fight [with Thompson] is a risk, three or four [out of five]. Tony Thompson knows it is his last chance. People say to me these fighters are 40 years old, I ask anyone to go into the ratings and find a top-10 rated heavyweight who isn't 40 years old and isn't David Price or Tyson Fury."
Frank Maloney was speaking to Steve Bunce on Buncey's Boxing Podcast. Kell Brook and Anthony Crolla are also featured in this week's episode. Click here to listen.