Busy Fury big favorite this Saturday
By Bill Tibbs
Tyson Fury’s busy 6-month schedule starts with Otto Wallin, (Who? More on that later), in Las Vegas on September 14th. Then, he wants to get back in the ring in December in the United Kingdom to close out the year before he looks towards the fight everybody is really talking about – the Deontay Wilder rematch which is being bandied about for late February.
That is an aggressive schedule for any fighter but it is apparently the plan for one of boxing’s most popular and engaging characters.
Fury (28-0-1, 20 KO’s) jumped to the front of the heavyweight division in November of 2015 when (then 24-0) Fury upset long reigning champion Vladamir Klitchko to capture the WBA, WBO and IBF world heavyweight belts.
However, after the life-changing win, Fury stepped back from the game to deal with personal issues that would keep him out of the ring for almost 3 years.
Then in June and August of 2018 he returned to pick up 2 wins and announce he was healthy, healed and happy to be back. In December of 2018 he stepped into the squared circle with undefeated WBC champion Deontay Wilder in a wildly entertaining fight that would end in a draw. He returned 6 months later and picked up a win against undefeated Tom Shwarz and is now back to fight in what he hopes will be the first of 2 wins before the Wilder rematch.
Fury, who signed a huge promotional deal (did I read 100m?) with Bob Arum’s Top Rank Promotions, is keeping busy and staying in the public’s eye. And, while some of the names he is facing aren’t of the household variety (Tom Schwarz, Otto Wallin) let’s keep in mind that the combined records of Schwarz and Wallin is 44-0 so that says something - they must be able to fight a bit at some level.
But all the sizzle, and Fury can light the media fires like no other, is really leading up to the huge Wilder rematch. However, it isn’t like it’s all easy sailing until then. A loss or a poor performance wouldn’t help anything in setting up a Wilder rematch so Fury not only has to win he has to look good doing it.
In recent interviews, both fighters seemed to express confidence, albeit in different ways for different reasons – Fury already talking about his next fight and Wallin looking forward to the opportunity of a lifetime.
"After I beat Wallin, looking into the future, me crystal ball, I’m gonna fight again in December”, said Fury. "I want to fight back in England, though, in December, I’m not really too bothered where it is, as long it’s in the UK, and as long as I can get out in December, I’ll be happy," said Fury who has been doing much of his preparation at the Top Rank Gym in Las Vegas.
Sweden’s 28-year old Wallin likes what he is up against in Fury knowing all the pressure is on the Gypsy King while he merely gets to chase a dream that started as a little boy.
"This is the type of fight I’ve been waiting for since I was a kid and my father started showing me some boxing moves in our kitchen," said Wallin. "I’ve made a lot of sacrifices to get to this point and I’m very happy it’s starting to pay off”, he said. “I know I’m an underdog in this fight, but I’m ready for this opportunity and I’m going to grab it with both hands. Anybody can get beat and especially in the heavyweight division. I like the fact that I have everything to gain and Tyson has everything to lose."
With new champion Andy Ruiz taking the IBF, WBA and WBO titles from Anthony Joshua in June in a huge upset, (they rematch in December), WBC champion Wilder who is rumoured to be facing Luis Ortiz in November, a motivated and Wilder-bound Tyson Fury, and Wallin with nothing to lose heading into the biggest fight of life, it sees boxing biggest division enjoying some interesting times.
Crystal ball time.
-Fury 2 wins (September and December) and then a February Wilder rematch.
-Wilder, a November win to set up Fury rematch
-Ruiz/Joshua winner to face Fury/Wilder winner in later 2020
It could happen – here’s hoping.
-Fury stoppage Wallin under 4.
-Fury vs TBA (Dec.) see above
-Wilder UD Ortiz
-Ruiz late(er) stoppage Joshua