IBF Mandatory Challenger Kubrat Pulev In The Frame For Fury’s Next Fight

Absolutely everyone knows Tyson Fury needs a far stiffer, sterner challenge in his next fight. Fans will only put up with so many mismatches, the kind Fury was involved in last night, in his Las Vegas debut, against 15/1 underdog Tom Schwarz. And, according to Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated and his inside info, Fury may well get just that in the fall.

The plan is for Fury to have the second fight in his lucrative ESPN deal in either September or October, and according to a tweet by Mannix, it could be Kubrat Pulev next. Pulev is the IBF mandatory challenger and according to Mannix, both Pulev and Top Rank are waiting to see what the IBF will do next. If Andy Ruiz goes into an immediate return fight with Anthony Joshua as many expect will be the case, the IBF may well choose to strip Ruiz of their title, thus Fury and Pulev could fight for it.

“Kubrat Pulev is a candidate to face Tyson Fury in the fall, per source, as Top Rank continues to build towards Wilder rematch. Pulev, TR waiting to see what the IBF will do regarding the Ruiz-Joshua rematch. Pulev is IBF mandatory,” Mannix’ tweet reads.

It would be a shame if Ruiz were stripped of one of the three belts he sensationally ripped from Joshua on June 1, and fans would be further away, yet again, from seeing an undisputed heavyweight champ. But the IBF stripped Fury, just two weeks after he upset Wladimir Klitschko back in 2015, so who knows what the organisation may do this time.

In terms of the fight, belt or no belt, Fury-Pulev would likely be a far, far more competitive affair than Fury’s easy dismantling of the unheralded Schwarz. Pulev, beaten only by the aforementioned Klitschko, has been around for a long time, he is tough and he is experienced. Also, the fight may appeal to Fury seeing as how Pulev beat his cousin, Hughie Fury a while back.

One thing seems certain, Pulev would extend Fury far greater than Tom Schwarz managed to do. And IF the IBF did sanction a Fury-Pulev fight for their belt, and if Fury won, he would then enter his anticipated return with Wilder in what would be a two-belt unification clash.

Let’s see how things unfold.