Speaking exclusively to Press Box PR, Michael Hunter, who is on Bob Arum’s five-man shortlist to replace Deontay Wilder for Tyson Fury’s next fight later this year, revealed exclusively:
- His chances are slim – Fury will favour a “softer”, “cheaper” and “easier” opponent
- He hints that his dominance over Fury in the amateurs will factor in him missing out
- That he would “fight Fury for free”
- Wilder made “right decision” swerving the trilogy
What’s the Latest?
Michael Hunter: “There has been no offer put out there yet. I am just as close as I was a year ago, I’m the same distance. I don’t think there’s going to be a fight with Tyson Fury because there are easier fights. They would rather have easier fights, but you never know.”
“I think I pose more of a threat than his original opponent Deontay Wilder.”
“I’m the best one on their list, but I can guarantee they’ll pick the easiest or softest opponent. It’s not about fighters fighting the best people anymore.”
But does Tyson Fury need the fear factor to get up for a fight?
“Fury needs the fear factor, but he doesn’t need to be in fear. He wants to be a little scared, he does not want to be totally scared.”
“Technically, energetically, spiritually I would not be the right business move. It would be more honourable to fight someone like me, but in this day and age it’s more business. It’s all based on money.
“I guarantee they’ll get a cheaper opponent in and it will be a lot easier, that’s just the world we live in.
“I would fight for free, I’d fight Tyson Fury for absolutely nothing. There’s a lot of budget being saved right there, and they still wouldn’t fight me.
“I see this as a Tyson Fury move rather than a TopRank move – I think the amateurs has a lot to do with it. People say it was the amateurs and it was a long time ago, but it’s a little different when you beat him how I beat him.
“I felt I beat my guy every step of the way, It wasn’t really close. I felt I won a unanimous decision and almost by knockout, I had him out on his feet towards the end.
“It’s the same nature if we fought now, you’d see him in deep water. Taken to a place he doesn’t want to be. I would cut the fight short.
“The only thing he has is he’s bigger than me. He’s not stronger than me, faster than me, he has nothing more than me. His will isn’t as strong, his mental capacity – we know that has some faultiness to it – I could see a lot of things I could capitalise on.
“We were scheduled to fight a second time in the amateurs at a black tie event, very prestigious. Fury was the man at the time and we were the main event. He quit and didn’t honour the second fight, he didn’t show up to the weigh in. He was a no show.”
Why do you think the Fury vs Wilder trilogy isn’t happening?
“I think that they have made the right decision by not fighting. He was already 2-0 with Tyson Fury, I don’t think he was fit for it. Not necessarily physically, but mentally.
“For Deontay I don’t think he was mentally prepared this time around. That’s not to say he won’t be prepared in a year or something. I think there was a lot on him with the business, a lot of people saying this and that.
“I think even in the second fight there was a lot of push and pull but he was still strong enough and had enough control at that time to continue to go on with the fight. He could have had an injury too, but then it fell apart, it didn’t go his way.
“This third fight would be the worst situation because he’s not totally ready yet, it’s not a good business move.”
If not you, who gets the Fury fight?
“I think Agit Kabayel or Efe Ajagba because it’s easier to deal with when it comes to the business.
“The number one thing is they’re not risking anything. Everyone is going to get a paycheck and no problems.”