Tyson Fury fights on Hopkins-Pascal undercard on Saturday

By Rob Moore: I was considering “the highly anticipated North American debut” of Tyson Fury on Saturday, December 18th against Zack Page, and I found myself feeling a slight concern that we could be watching another talent that may remain unfulfilled. This may seem a pessimistic view of the giant 6ft 8inch Fury, whose outspoken approach has done as much to attract attention as his giant frame, and I hope that proves to be the case.

My concern is based on a view that Tyson appears to be following the trend of too many heavyweights today, in that he simply does not get in the condition that I believe a fighter who aspires to reach the top level, at any weight, should aspire to. I find it baffling when a guy like Fury, who has so many natural physical gifts - huge frame, reach, fast hands, appears not to enter the ring in top shape, or be able box with any intensity for more than a handful of rounds.

I feel a frustration, I believe shared by many boxing fans, who have waited for serious contenders to emerge in the heavyweight division and see natural talented fighters like Chris Arreola and Odlanier Solis enter the ring at least 30lbs over their best fighting weights. I read recently how Solis team were comfortable with Solis weight, which I find astounding.

It strikes me that these guys are simply not living the lives of professional athletes, which will leave their talent unfulfilled, and if I am honest, pays insufficient respect to the fans that pay to support and watch these guys. It cannot have escaped the notice that the three current bet holders, whether you love or loathe them, keep themselves in shape and turn up fully prepared in top condition. I would argue that it is also the lack of truly conditioned heavyweights that allow dedicated warriors like Holyfield and McCall to be fighting well into their forties, and look competitive.

I hope that Tyson Fury's recent time with Manny Steward has shown him that to reach the top he is going to have to work harder, lose his “spare tire” and be able to perform over 12 rounds. I believe the guy has the tools to go all the way if he has the dedication to go with it. I will be far more interested to see the shape he enters the ring on 18th December and his work rate than how quickly he gets Page out of there.

Article posted on 15.12.2010

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