Former super middleweight world champion George Groves has admitted before he is a Usyk ‘fan boy’ and then doubled down on his view in the lead-up to Usyk’s last outing against Daniel Dubois, but in light of what happened has he changed his mind?
That fight was marred by a controversial body shot that some believe was low but wasn’t ruled as such by the referee. Usyk regained his composure and went on to knock out Dubois to retain his WBA, WBO and IBF world titles.
Speaking to talkSPORT Boxing, Groves stated again that he still thinks Usyk beats Fury having seen nothing in that fight to change his mind.
“It won’t be an easy fight for him but I think he’ll have the ability, the boxing IQ, the athleticism and cope with Fury’s mind games. Everything Fury has that has been a major attribute for him I think Usyk has seen before or can cope with. He’s always had to travel and always been the away fight and he’s always come up trumps and won.”
Groves went on to assess the threat of Fury and reckoned he hadn’t had the toughest of tests recently.
“Fury hasn’t boxed that regularly of late. Since the [Deontay] Wilder wins, which was a good few years ago and were great to watch, he hasn’t really been challenged.”
Groves admitted some things are matched against Usyk but that his pedigree would ultimately shine through.
“He’ll have to give up reach but he’s agile and fast on his fight and comes at great angles. Usyk won’t be in range to be leaned on and grabbed and held. He has the boxing ability. He’s an amateur champion.”
The undisputed fight was in discussions for many months before going cold, but Fury’s promoter Bob Arum teased once more that it could happen before the end of the year.