Cape Town - The Gypsy King Tyson Fury has to deliver on his promise to beat Deontay Wilder in the third of their three-fight trilogy. The world of heavyweight boxing needs an unbeaten Fury and the personality that goes with an unbeaten Fury.
If Fury loses, the business of heavyweight boxing loses.
No fighter in boxing gets people talking like the Gypsy King – and after his seven-round demolition of the previously unbeaten Wilder in fight No 2, people haven’t stopped talking about the manner in which Fury finished off Wilder.
Wilder has vowed to avenge his stunning defeat and even confessed to hating Fury.
‘He is the only opponent I have ever hated. I have to control that, not get over excited, be calm within the storm. But I want to beat him up for a few rounds before I knock him out.’
Wilder’s distaste has only really been aired in the past week because he went into a 20-month silence post the loss, while Fury, who was preparing to initially fight Anthony Joshua hasn’t stopped shouting his disgust for Wilder, with the latter having made excuse after excuse as to why Fury beat him.
Fury’s response has been one of fury and he has labelled Wilder a “rubbish” and “garbage” as a human being.
Boxing needs characters and it needs personalities, especially in this age when YouTubers are cashing in on boxing showbiz exhibition fights that make hundreds of millions of dollars because of pay per view purchases from their vast social media followers.
Boxing is devoid of those big presence characters and none stands taller in a room than the 6 foot 9 inches frame of Fury.
But it isn’t Fury's charisma, his trash talk, his eccentric nature or his boxing skills that exclusively make him such a marketing magnet for the sport, it is a life story that has seen battle his inner demons of recreational drug abuse and drinking and confess to his ongoing daily fight against depression.
Fury has never been shy to open up to the world about what drives him to success and what has the potential to drive him to destruction.
The Fury versus Joshua fight was projected to financially be the biggest fight in the history of the sport. Then a fortnight ago, Joshua took a boxing lesson from Ukrainian Oleksandr Usyk and lost his title.
The result surprised Fury but the consequence of the result annoyed him because of the commercial opportunity lost.
It also reinforced how quickly the multi-million dollar megafight can be killed off.
Undefeated fighters remain the biggest seller because people watch to see if they can be beaten.
Fury, currently, is the only undefeated big name around but as bullish as he has been about beating Wilder, he has also conceded that Wilder has the capacity to end the fight with one punch.
‘Joshua was messing with some cruiserweight, who was going to beat him on points if he lost. I am messing with a man who can end you at any time of the day, and time in the round with either hand. My task is much more dangerous, but I am much more capable, so I welcome it.’
Fury’s trainer SugarHill Steward, who masterminded the strategy in Fury v Wilder 2, this week declared his fighter as superior to Muhammad Ali, Mike Tyson, Lennox Lewis and Wladimir Klitschko.
The UK-based Daily Mail, who reported the story, described the claim as extraordinary.
Steward was insistent in his statement: ‘Tyson has all their characteristics and the mental toughness. He has everything they had and more. Tyson is a special boxer and he will have a special place in boxing history.’
Wilder, despite the shambles of the defeat against Fury possesses the most lethal right hand in heavyweight boxing, possibly ever, and it is this sledgehammer that saved him in fights against Eric Molina, Artur Szpika and Luis Ortiz, who were all outboxing Wilder.
Then, BOOM, the right hand struck and Wilder sent all three into orbit.
Wilder also landed the most crushing blow to Fury in their first fight and it is a miracle that Fury got up, beat the count and survived the final round.
Wilder has a punch that has to be respected, but Fury, to quote his trainer, has it all in being able to box, throw a punch and certainly take one.
Joshua has predicted that an ‘obsessed’ Wilder will knock out Fury, but the bookies don’t agree, with Fury so heavily favoured that there is nothing to make from betting on a Fury win.
The Ring Magazine/RingTV.com also agrees with the bookies and of the 20 experts interviewed for the fight, 19 favour Fury to end Wilder’s night – and possibly his career.