Oleksandr Usyk (17-0, 13 KOs) isn’t satisfied with looking to snatch the world titles from IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua, he also plans on taking the WBC strap from Tyson Fury in order to accomplish his goal of unifying the division. The former undisputed cruiserweight champion Usyk wants BOTH Fury and Joshua.
As the WBO mandatory, Usyk is positioned to challenge Joshua (23-1, 21 KOs) later this year in December, as long as both fighters when their next contests coming up. additionally, a vaccine for coronavirus will likely need to be found to control the pandemic for this year’s fights to go ahead as planned.
Usyk has to win his May 23 fight against British heavyweight Dereck Chisora (32-9, 23 KOs) at the O2 Arena in London, England for him to stay on course to challenge the winner of the June 20th Joshua vs. Kubrat Pulev fight. Usyk vs. Chisora will be shown on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK.
For the 2012 Olympic gold medalist Usyk, this will be his second fight as a heavyweight. He defeated Chazz Witherspoon by a 7th round stoppage last October in his match in the weight class. It was a so-so performance from Usyk. He can do better than that obviously, and he’ll need to for him to defeat the hard-hitting Chisora on May 23.
Usyk wants BOTH Joshua and Fury
“I work hard on it,” said Usyk to skysports.com when asked about his goal of winning all 4 world titles at heavyweight. “I want to fight both.”
It could be difficult for Usyk to even beat the 36-year-old Chisora, let alone defeat the 6’9″ Fury and 6’6″ Joshua. The size differences between those two and Usyk is huge. The one thing that stood out in Usyk’s heavyweight debut against the 38-year-old Witherspoon was his lack of size.
At 6’3″, 215 lbs, Usyk looked like a light-hitting cruiserweight, and not a heavyweight. Without size or power, Usyk is going to need to be the modern equivalent of Chris Byrd for him to defeat the giant super heavyweights that dominate the top rung of the division.
Chisora weighs in the mid-240s, and he’s going to have a tremendous weight advantage over Usyk. Although Usyk might be able to out-box Chisora, it could look ugly if he uses too much movement. unfortunately, using movement won’t be effective or Usyk against Joshua and Fury because they’ll have a huge reach advantage over him. The only way Usyk will land anything against Joshua and Fury is if he goes straight at them.
Usyk won’t divulge what Hearn told him about his WBO status
“Of course, I’m not going to tell what I’m going to do but on the 23rd, people are going to come and they’re going to see what I can do and box Dereck,” said Usyk to Boxing Social.
“I’m just going to go through my goal and that’s what I’m going to box. Because I think it’s going to be a good fight,” said Usyk when asked why he selected Chisora as his opponent. “It’s a secret,” Usyk stated when asked what Matchroom Boxing promoter Eddie Hearn told him about his WBO mandatory position.
Hearn has made it clear that he wants Joshua to face Fury later this year. That is to say, he wants Usyk to wait until 2021 for him to get his WBO mandatory title shot against the winner of the Joshua vs. Pulev fight.
Usyk isn’t interested in waiting. He wants his title shot against Joshua or Pulev in 2020, and he’s expected to push for it. Would Joshua vacate his WBO belt so that he can bypass Usyk and face Fury? That’s a very good possibility he’ll do that.