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OPINION: Wilder vs Fury; AKA The Battle of the Mouths

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Set to be fight of the year the two heavyweights Tyson Fury and WBC champion Deontay Wilder are due to face off at the Staples Center in Los Angeles on the 1st December.

Fury has spent 2018 training and fighting in his so called 'comeback fights' which have been very underwhelming. His first was hosted in Manchester where the lineal champion faced Albanian fighter Sefer Seferi. The build-up to the fight was unusual, as you would expect from Fury, with the Briton kissing Seferi in their pre-fight press conference.

The fight didn't last long as Seferi's team threw in the towel at the beginning of the fourth round, certainly not the Gypsy King's most challenging fight. His second came in Belfast at Windsor Park where Fury fought Italian Francesco Pianeta as part of Carl Frampton's undercard. This fight gave Tyson minutes under his belt, winning on points after 10 rounds of Boxing. But there was one spectator that was keeping a close eye on the undercard and that was Deontay Wilder.

After WIlder's impressive TKO of Luis 'King Kong' Ortiz in New York, the Bronze Bomber seemed hungry to face top dog Anthony Joshua in the UK. However, after various contract issues a fight with Tyson Fury was confirmed somewhat out of the blue. A fight in the making ever since Fury walked into the ring after Wilder KO'd Artur Szpilka in January 2016, retaining his WBC heavyweight title.

It is still unclear as to why the fight between AJ and the Bronze Bomber wasn't confirmed, with both parties claiming it was the others fault. Below is Eddie Hearn's take on the negotiations.

Both heavyweights have outstanding records, Wilder has won 100% of his 40 fights only one by decision. This was against Bermane Stiverne, a man who the Bronze Bomber faced again late last year. This years rematch proved to be slightly anticlimactic with Deontay knocking out the Canadian in the last seconds of the first round.

Wilder has been criticised often for taking the 'easy' fights, making his 40-0 record seem misleading in regards to good he really is. The American's first real test came in March this year against Cuban Luis Ortiz, an ageing fighter (39) but with a very good record (28-0). Arguably one of the best fights the year, Wilder stopped Ortiz in the 10th through a TKO after the Cuban had went down several times in the latter stages of the fight.

However, it wasn't an easy fight by any means, Wilder being saved by the bell in the 7th, and some would argue that a younger, more powerful fighter would have had the Bronze Bomber kissing the canvas. An opponent such as Joshua or maybe even Fury.

Fury also has a very impressive record. In nearly all of Tyson's fights he has been seen as the underdog, 27-0 is his record, 19 of which are by knockout. Arguably one of the Mancunians most impressive fights came in Düsseldorf, Germany where he faced WBA, IBF and WBO champions Wladimir Klitschko.

A fearsome, experienced fighter who will go down as one of the best and Fury's toughest opponent to date. Tyson Fury won the fight through unanimous decision despite pundits and fans alike writing him off. The Gypsy King was criticised for being 'too boring' with boxing fans claiming Klitschko 'wasn't at his best'.

Both fighters are talkers, and both still don't seem to be the finished product. Both fight in unorthodox ways and both are yet to be defeated. This fight is massive for Wilder and Fury alike. Wilder needs to prove that he is the world class boxer that his record suggest and Fury needs to prove he is ready to compete at the top level once again and put his money where his mouth is. However, no matter what happens in the build-up to the fight, both men will have one eye on Anthony Joshua.

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Image rights - Wikimedia Commons - https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Tyson_Fury_-_2016-04-30.jpg and Flickr - https://www.flickr.com/photos/105464285@N06/16123587829/ 




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