Currently out in Australia, in support of his good friend, former WBO heavyweight champ Joseph Parker – who scored an easy one-round stoppage win over an over matched and woefully outgunned Faiga Opelu earlier today – Tyson Fury has had a go at playing match maker. Speaking with Australian media after Parker’s quick win, the reigning WBC heavyweight boss listed four names, four fights, he’d like to see Parker get next.
“I’d like to see the rematch with Andy Ruiz, Joe Joyce, Dillian Whyte or even AJ. F**k ’em all, Joseph Parker is back,” Fury said.
In truth, either of the four fights Fury listed would prove attractive and interesting, yet how likely is it that Parker, 32-3(23) will be able to get any one of them? Joshua we know is looking at that massive December fight/payday with Deontay Wilder and he may not fight before then (but even if he does, AJ won’t be interested in a return fight with Parker, who he won a wide decision over in a dull affair some years back).
Joyce has his rematch with Zhilei Zhang to get his teeth into, so this leaves just Ruiz and Whyte. Parker has long since wanted a return fight with Whyte, who won a close decision over him in the summer of 2018, but does Whyte want a second rumble with the New Zealander? As for Ruiz, Parker defeated Ruiz to become WBO heavyweight champ, this via majority decision back in 2016. Ruiz may or may not express interest in trying to get his revenge over Parker.
Fury has put out some big names for Parker to fight, yet realistically none of the four fights Fury listed are too likely to get made. But Parker has to fight someone next, he wants to keep busy, and the 31 year old believes he has what it takes to become a champion again. But how much bargaining power has Parker got? Can he get himself a big fight?
Fury might have declared how Parker “is back,” but he’s not really. Not yet.