To absolutely no great surprise, promoter Frank Warren has said his fighter, Tyson Fury, will not be going ahead with his talked of December 23 date of a fight with rival heavyweight champ Oleksandr Usyk. Anyone who tuned in to watch Fury’s fight with MMA star/pro boxing debutant Francis Ngannou knows why, too. Fury looked nothing short of terrible in surviving Ngannou – Fury didn’t beat Ngannou, he survived him, getting gifted with a 10 round split decision that has enraged many – and “The Gypsy King” shipped a good deal of punishment.
With less than eight weeks to go until December 23, Fury will not be ready. Cut in the middle of his forehead, bruised around the left eye, and no doubt very sore after absorbing some bombs from the man-mountain who shocked both Fury and the world last night, the WBC heavyweight champion will need time to recover. And Fury’s co-promoter Frank Warren has said as much.
Speaking with Boxing King Media not too long after Fury had survived Ngannou, who knocked him down in the third round and then really roughed him up and had him holding on hard in the eighth round, Warren said “it won’t be happening” when referring to the December 23 date for the Usyk unification showdown.
“Tyson did what he always does and came away with the win and now we’ll look to the future, we know the fight’s been made with Usyk and hopefully there will be a date nailed down soon, as soon as Tyson feels like he’s ready to go,” Warren said. “It was a harder fight than [Derek] Chisora and it was a harder fight than Dillian Whyte, that’s a fact. No, we wont be going for that [the December 23 date], he won’t be ready for that. It was a tough, tough fight. He’ll need time out to heal his body, [the] time that takes, and then get back into camp, he’ll only have about five or six weeks training, so it’s not going to happen.”
As fans may recall, prior to the Ngannou fight, Fury was shouting and balling how Uysk “has to fight me then (December 23) or he will get sued – we both signed the contract.” How things have changed due to the magnificent performance – the winning performance – Francis Ngannou put on last night in Riyadh. Plenty of people were sceptical the Fury-Usyk fight would actually happen on December 23 BEFORE last night’s fight, with these people knowing how unpredictable and unreliable Fury can be.
So, now what happens? What if Usyk doesn’t want to wait around for Fury? Just how long will it take for Fury to “feel like he’s ready to go?” Does Fury still want the Usyk fight? Has Fury peaked and is he currently on a rapid road downhill? And where does Francis Ngannou go next?
Last night’s fight really did shake up the heavyweight division.