British boxing legend Ricky Hatton has labelled the noise around Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua as “embarrassing”. Speaking to Gambling Zone, The Hitman discussed the latest speculation concerning the two heavyweights, adding that the fight “needs to happen” for the future of the sport.
Hatton said: “We’ve been wondering if this fight is going to happen for the last five or six years; there’s been a lot of talk and not much else. I think it will happen. I think it needs to happen. It’s getting to the stage where all the noise around it, it’s getting a bit embarrassing. I’m not pointing the finger at Tyson or AJ, nor do I think why it hasn’t happened is down to Frank Warren and Eddie Hearn – nobody knows what the negotiations are like and who is in the right or who is in the wrong. We don’t know what the route of the problem is. It could be a number of things: the purse, the TV, location, we don’t know. A fight such as this, of this magnitude and size, would be the biggest fight in British boxing history and it’s not happening for some reason.”
If the two fighters do finally get it on in the ring, who do you think has the advantage and which fighter has more to lose?
Hatton: “It’s hard to say when you’re looking at fights in the heavyweight division. We were talking about the FA Cup final earlier; a Manchester derby where anything can happen. The same thing applies to heavyweight boxing. It only takes one punch and with the way that AJ can hit, the way that Tyson can hit, in heavyweight boxing it can go either way.
I think the favourite would have to be Tyson, based on his recent form and performances. AJ has had a wonderful career; Olympic Gold medallist, two-time undisputed Heavyweight Champion of the World.
A lot of people were saying that AJ looked a little gun shy in his last fight, a little bit more safety first. I think you’d have to go with Tyson as being the favourite if and when the fight does happen. I think Fury would be the slight favourite and I don’t think AJ would have a pop at me for suggesting that because of some of his recent performances. If you asked me where to put my last pound, I’d put in on Tyson”
Hatton revealed that he is concerned about the popularity of YouTube fights, adding: “I think for British boxing it’s a little bit embarrassing. For the future of the sport, the big names need to start fighting each other. You’ve got other fights getting a lot of attention: MMA fighters fighting boxers, YouTubers fighting each other, boxers fighting YouTubers. These are all huge events and, sadly, our sport is getting left behind a little bit because fights like Tyson Fury vs Anthony Joshua are not happening.”