In a new series, published during weekdays on Boxing Social, the incomparable Terry Dooley delivers his unique look at the boxing news.
The UFC’s Dana White has declared that Saturday’s thrilling encounter between WBC heavyweight holder Tyson Fury and former titlist Deontay Wilder was just the shot in the arm boxing needed.
White initially thought that the rematch was pointless, but it turned out to be a thrilling example of boxing at its best, and why it makes front page headlines and is a huge talking point for all sports fans when at its finest — although to be fair White doesn’t need an excuse to talk about boxing, he just does it.
“I thought it was awesome,” he said (Quotes C/O The Independent). “Going into it, my thought process was: ‘For what, why?’ You know what I mean. [Anthony Joshua] just got beat, and yeah, why do that? You know why? Because boxing needed that. Boxing needed that fight.
“It was an incredible heavyweight fight. I thought both guys fought their arses off. And for Fury to come in at 277lbs and fight the way that he fought — get knocked down, get back up and keep fighting — it was just exactly what boxing needed. So, glad it happened and congratulations to both of them, everybody involved and the sport of boxing.”
Boxing in general and heavyweight boxing in particular has often been talked about as a mirror of the society in which that era takes place. A microcosm to the macrocosm. A cliché that can hauled out when you have run out of things to talk about.
One artist has taken this idea to its natural conclusion by crafting a microscopic sculpture of Fury. Willard Wigan is a micro-artist so his work can only be viewed through a microscope. His tribute to Fury is called ‘Hard As Nails’ and he has told the Birmingham Evening Mail that he has a lot of respect for Fury for being open about his battle against mental health issues.
The piece is one of 25 currently on display as part of his show at the Birmingham Contemporary Art Gallery. “I have got a lot of respect for Tyson Fury,” said Wigan. “I am a big boxing fan, I always have been.”
Visitors to Birmingham are encouraged not to miss this exhibition, although that might prove to be difficult if you haven’t got your microscope to hand.
Frank Warren has banged the drum for a Fury homecoming fight since Saturday night and has named the Arsenal Emirates Stadium as the front-runner when it comes to venues for the Manchester-born, Morecambe-based WBC titlist.
Fury’s last five fights have taken place in America, he is becoming a huge star over there and is now firm favourite in Las Vegas, but Warren feels that the time has come to head back home to the UK in order to strike while the iron is hot.
“The main thing for him is to have a bit of time out first and we don’t know exactly what’s next,” said Warren (quotes C/O The Manchester Evening News), who would presumably take the lead from fellow promoter Bob Arum were Fury to fight over here again.
“But what’s important is that he’s in a good place right now after that fight,” he added. “As for what’s next, I would personally like to be back in London. If it’s early spring then I’d like Arsenal, but there’s Cardiff and I’m sure Tyson would like Manchester United for the next fight.”
Fighters dream of cracking the USA, particularly Las Vegas, but once you have reached that dream your mind immediately turns to fighting for less money at the stadium of a mid-table club so there is every chance that we could see Fury in London again sometime soon.
It is fortunate for Fury that plans to fight in the UK are in place, because if he wanted to fight in Las Vegas within the next 45-days he would find that his plans would be scuppered by suspensions issued by the Nevada Athletic State Commission to both fighters due to the brutal nature of the fight.
Wilder has been hit with a six-month suspension due to being knocked down three times en route to a damaging KO loss. Wilder can fight again on or after April 8, according to information passed to ESPN, and he sustained head and hand injuries during his brave display, which led to an 11th-round KO defeat despite the fact that he floored Fury twice.
Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez has told Brian Custner that despite being part of a great fight Wilder needs to add more improvements before he can beat Fury. “Great fight, great fight,” he said. “I think Wilder needs more condition, more moves, move the head. It’s difficult when you don’t have condition and don’t know how to move. That’s why Tyson Fury beat him. Tyson Fury’s a great fighter.”
Adam Kownacki low-blowed himself to a DQ loss against Robert Helenius on the Fury-Wilder undercard and various outlets have reported that the 32-year-old heavyweight cannot blow his own nose now after he suffered an orbital bone fracture during the defeat and the damage is so bad he has been given a series of guidelines to follow until it heals.
A doctor’s report that was shown to ESPN stated that: ‘You have a fracture of the orbital floor and will need to follow up with an ophthalmologist and plastic surgeon. Do not blow your nose. Elevate your head and use ice packs.’
Helenius’s testicles were unavailable for comment.
Chris Eubank Sr. has told The Evening Standard that his bag was robbed recently and to add insult to injury the sartorially sharp, former fighter was robbed in West London by someone as equally well-dressed. Eubank was inconspicuously walking the street holding a £400 Louis Vuitton bag, which contained a Waitrose Belgian milk chocolate bar with hazelnuts that Eubank stated was, “The perfect temperature”, when the thief struck.
“I couldn’t believe it — I was stunned,” he said. “He couldn’t have known who I was because he wouldn’t have tried it. He was just looking at the prize. It was over in seconds and he was down the road like a sprinter with a baton.”
“He was rather well-dressed,” he added. “I thought, ‘He must be the country’s most brazen crook’. But it’s a sign of the times — they don’t care about confronting someone like me, so nobody is immune. “
To add insult to injury, and in true boxing style, Eubank had been marinading his bar of chocolate for a number of days. Then just like it was gone. “That’s what’s really messed up my day,” he revealed. “It’s been in there for six days just ready to eat. I like it at that temperature, and they took it.”
Main image: Sean Michael Ham/TGB Promotions.