In his latest column with Metro.co.uk, the British boxing legend assesses the damage of Tyson Fury vs Deontay Wilder being postponed and looks back at his best Fightzone moments so far.
Fury’s future in more doubt than ever
Boxing fans, we are in limbo again. Tyson Fury’s fight with Deontay Wilder has been postponed which is a huge shame. While a new date is now set for October, we have lost one of the biggest fights of the summer.
But what puts a further damper on it for me is the fight we all want, Fury vs Anthony Joshua, now seems further away than ever. What happens now? It all just pushes the fight further back. As a fight fan, you fear the worst, the biggest fight in British boxing history, is it actually going to happen? It just seems we are doomed.
Tyson’s problems in the past with his depression, his mental health and battles with drink and drugs have been well documented in the past. I remember Tyson saying to me ages ago: ‘I want a couple of warm-up fights then I want to beat Wilder. Then immediately after that, I want to fight AJ. And then I’m done.’
Anthony Joshua is younger, he has less miles on the clock, he is an athlete 24-7. I know Tyson is an athlete 24-7 now but the damage he might have done to his body years back… Tyson wants to get in, get out and prove he is the best fighter in the world. And the more it goes on, the more I worry that Tyson might just go: ‘F**k it’.
When you think about it, Tyson had two comeback fights, he went straight in against Wilder and went straight in for the rematch. He wants to get his career and his legacy done and dusted. Whereas for AJ, the younger, fresher of the two, it doesn’t matter as much if this drags out another two or three years. It does for Tyson. The longer this drags out the better this is for AJ.
Whyte deserving of chance to step in
Tyson wants to get in and get out. But in the short-term, I’d love Dillian Whyte get his chance.
Dillian’s name has been chucked into the mix again to maybe step in and fight Wilder in July and there is nothing I would love more than to see Dillian get his chance because he seems to have been no1 contender forever and a day. Granted, he got beat by Alexander Povetkin which was a disaster but he put that right.
He would have no fear fighting Wilder. I know Wilder can certainly hit. But Dillian will go in there fearless and would have a great chance.
Get Dillian in there so hopefully he can do the business against Wilder and amid all this farting around with Joshua and Tyson, let Dillian fight AJ again! Or Tyson fight Dillian! At least it gives British fight fans something they can get their teeth into. It is really frustrating. I bet Tyson is as sick as a chocolate frog about all this. He wants to get on with it, all he wants to do is cement his legacy and the more it drags the more I fear the big fight we all want won’t happen.
Whatever happens with it now, Tyson is going fight in October come what may. Tyson is the best heavyweight in the world and he has never performed as well as he has done in his most recent fights. He’s ticked all the boxes, he’s got the results he wants and he knows when he wants his career to end. There is only one final box he wants to tick and we all know what that is, finding out who is the best between him and AJ. When it drags and drags, sooner or later, you’re going to run out of patience.
Fury not at fault
But it is nobody’s fault. You can’t predict getting Covid in the camp, It is what it is. The main thing right now is Tyson getting healthy, we can talk all we want about what fights are happening but the main thing is your health. Get yourself better Tyson and then you can sit down with Frank Warren and Bob Arum, AJ can sit down with Eddie Hearn and we can see where we go from here. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter about fights and purses, your health is your wealth.
As a British fight fan, the one cushion to this blow is that if it can help Dillian Whyte, I’m happy. But Tyson is my mate and we want to see him secure his legacy. But for now, another spanner has been thrown into the works.
My Fightzone highlights
Looking back, Fightzone has been a massive success. Dennis Hobson took a big gamble putting on shows outside but the occasional bad weather didn’t deter people, Boxing fans still went come rain or shine. The quality of fights was competitive and there was a great atmosphere every night.
We had Myron Mills and Lucas Ballingall kick things off with a cracking scrap in an English lightweight title bout and they kept coming, with Jack Massey getting his first title last week – the first of many I think – in the IBF European cruiserweight title.
But the standout fight for me was the light-flyweights, Scotland’s Neil McCubbin and Birmingham’s Matt Windle. They went at it for the full distance hell for leather with Windle coming out on top that night. Moving up to flyweight and fighting Tommy Frank who came up short again against Rosendo Hugo Guarneros on another cracking Fightzone card could be an interesting scrap down the line.
It’s been a gamble but it has been a great success with quality domestic action from start to finish. Every week there has been a great fight.
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