Can Tyson Fury bounce back from his humbling experience at the hands of boxing debutant, former UFC heavyweight champion, Francis Ngannou? Will Fury even fight again? Currently sporting a cut to his forehead and a shiner, the WBC heavyweight champ is nursing both his wounds and the hit to his reputation as the self-proclaimed “greatest fighter ever.”
Fury knows deep down that he survived an almighty scare in Riyadh on Saturday night, and now the 35 year old is weighing up his future. Again, will Fury fight again? Quite a few people – George Groves for one – have suggested Fury may indeed call it quits. At this point in time, though, nobody knows, not even Fury himself.
Eddie Hearn has an opinion on things, as is to be expected, and Hearn said on The MMA Hour that Fury’s boxing legacy (this something that, if we take Fury at his word, doesn’t mean diddly to him) has been “massively tainted” due to the life and death struggle “The Gypsy King” had with the now 0-1 Ngannou. Hearn says the fight, its result, its competitive nature and the controversy surrounding the decision has been good for boxing, however, as “everyone is talking about boxing today.”
“I think Tyson is going to find it difficult over the next few weeks, because it’s going to be on top of him,” Hearn said. “And he doesn’t like that. He won’t like the criticism. And he’ll probably take a break from social media or media and just sort of slip away, and say, ‘I’m just going to chill,’ and [have] family time and Christmas and stuff like that. But it will hurt him, the criticism, because it’s massively tainted his legacy. It’s an interesting dynamic now. I said after the interview, it was a bit of a snap reaction [me saying] that the Fury-Usyk fight is dead. It’s obviously not dead. It’s still a big fight. But the value of that fight has plummeted. Because really, you want to see him rematch Francis Ngannou.”
It’s an interesting question: which fight would you rather see Fury take if he does have just one more fight before hanging up the gloves – Usyk or a return with Ngannou? There is no doubt, the buzz generated by what happened on Saturday has been huge, as Hearn said. And, to this end, Hearn is already talking about the possibility of his guy Anthony Joshua fighting Ngannou, in a fight that could be a real monster.
Fury was shaken up on Saturday night, the heavyweight division was shaken up, and now Francis Ngannou finds himself with an absolute ton of options. As for Fury, he has some deep thinking to do. But it’s true, that legacy he says he cares nothing about, has been severely affected due to what happened in Saudi Arabia.