The most anticipated boxing event of the year is nearly here and we have over 100 We Love Sport venues showing Wilder vs Fury across the UK. Download the We Love Sport app to find your local venue and book your front row seats.
In the meantime We Love Sport’s Tom Cleary looks ahead to the blockbuster fight in Las Vegas.
Someone’s 0 has got to go…finally.
By the time the two men step into the ring, it will have been 448 days since the WBC World Heavyweight Champion, Deontay Wilder (42-0-1) and Lineal Champion, Tyson Fury (29-0-1) fought to a draw in the Staples Center in Los Angeles. The first fight ended controversially, with many people believing Fury should have left the United States with the WBC belt in hand. The fight was scored a draw and after over a year of waiting, the fans will finally get to see the rematch. All of the Bronze Bomber’s fights are highly entertaining, with all bar one of his victories in his professional career ending by a vicious knockout, he later knocked out Bermane Stiverne in their rematch inside one round to right the only blemish on his record. However, in 12 rounds with Tyson Fury and hitting the Gypsy King with his biggest shot, he could not manage to seal the deal. The question that is on the mind of every single fight fan in the world is, “can Tyson Fury avoid getting knocked out by Deontay Wilder over 12 rounds again?”. Tyson Fury’s boxing ability and technique is almost second to none which is why so many people believe Fury can evade the infamous right hand and the general consensus is if the fight goes the distance, there will be a new champion.
And then there were two…
Since Tyson Fury first became a world champion, people discussed the top of the heavyweight tree as a three-way battle to see who was the king; Fury, Wilder and Anthony Joshua. When these two behemoths last fought, Anthony Joshua had all of the other belts and an undefeated record. Since then, a fourth name came into the discussion, Andy Ruiz JR, after knocking Anthony Joshua out, however the Brit then won his belts back, bringing the discussion back to just three men. Joshua might be back with the belts, but his loss actually makes this fight that bit more interesting, as now Wilder and Fury are the only two unbeaten fighters in this triangle. That will all change at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on February 22nd, as someone’s 0 has to go, leaving only one unbeaten king at the point of that triangle.
Why have we waited so long for a rematch?
Anthony Joshua v Andy Ruiz JR, Muhammad Ali v Leon Spinks and Mike Tyson v Evander Holyfield – three world heavyweight title matches that resulted in immediate rematches, despite there being clear conclusions in all of the first three fights, so the question must be asked as to why the WBC did not order an immediate rematch between Wilder and Fury when the fight was a draw. The reason has never been confirmed by any member of either party, but Fury’s decision to sign with Top Rank in America made it harder for any negotiations due to Deontay Wilder’s promotional agreement.
Since the first fight, both men have had two fights in the United States. Tyson Fury also managed to fit in a victory over Braun Strowman in the WWE. Tyson Fury finished Tom Schwarz in the second round and then survived an epic cut to eventually get the better of Swede Otto Wallin. For Wilder was a first round knockout of Anthony Joshua’s former foe Dominic Breazeale and a second knockout victory over Luis Ortiz in the seventh round despite being 6-0 down on the scorecards. Those two fights for Fury are huge when discussing how this rematch goes down, as the first fight was only Fury’s third fight since 2015 when he defeated Vladimir Klitschko. In Fury’s own words, Wilder “ain’t going to fight a 50% Tyson Fury anymore, he’s going to get a fully match-fit, back active, back sharp Tyson Fury”, and with more rounds under his belt and a new training regime it is hard to doubt those words.
So what happens, and what’s next?
This fight is one of the most anticipated boxing matches in recent history and if both fighters are to be believed we are in for an explosive night. The Gypsy King has said “you are getting bust, I’ll have everything I’ve got on it I beat you”, saying he is going to beat the unbeaten Wilder by knockout inside two rounds, while the current champion says he is going to “lay the hammer down” when he fights the Manchester native, and when Wilder was asked if he is going to go the full 12 rounds, he said he “doesn’t get paid for overtime”, so we can expect bombs to be thrown by both men if they are to entertain the fans and meet their predictions.
The answer to what’s next straight away is very simple if Tyson Fury wins, there will be an immediate rematch in the summer of 2020. If Wilder is to come through this fight retaining the belt, there is a chance he will defend it against someone else before an end-of-year unification bout with Anthony Joshua, if he is to get through his fight against an unconfirmed opponent in June. For years, Fury, Wilder and Joshua have argued about the terms for fighting one another however Anthony Joshua has now said he is willing to fight either with a 50/50 split. It has been a long time since the division has had an undisputed champion, but 2020 could finally be the year we see that come to fruition. Should Fury win on the 22nd, and then defeat Wilder in the trilogy fight, it could very well be him facing the holder of the other belts should Joshua win, in which would be an astronomical battle of Britain. Despite the fantasy talk, the world of boxing needs to get through the first big fight of 2020; the war between the Bronze Bomber and the Gypsy King.
How to watch Wilder vs Fury 2
The fight is being broadcast live from Las Vegas via BT Sport Box Office. Full details of the fight can be found here.
Download the We Love Sport app to find your local pub or bar showing the big fight. You can locate your chosen venue then book the best seats in the house!