Publish Date: 06/17/2019
Fact checked by: Simon Briffa
1) The heavyweights are not what they used to be
Sure evolution has made today’s heavyweights taller and heavier, but is that really better? When is the last time you saw a truly great heavyweight fight? Don’t give me that Klitschko-Joshua or Wilder-Fury crap, either. I will give you both were dramatic fights but come on, try to watch those fights again from start to finish and you will likely doze off at times, especially with the sound down. Afterwards go and watch Holmes-Norton, Holmes-Cooney, Ali-Frazier or even Michael Moorer against Bert Cooper, now those were great fights! Wilder and Fury each landed less than 100 punches each in their fight
A few years ago I compared him to Frank Bruno and I think so far that comparison has proven true. He is robotic, has no personality and skill wise he has not progressed the last few years. When he lost to Ruiz he looked more relieved than anything else. Can he beat Ruiz in a rematch? Sure he can, but even if he does he still is not very good and will never be. Again, he’s stiff and from what we recently saw I think it’s safe to say that his heart is not one of his stronger points.
The history of the heavyweight division is littered with one-shot Cinderella champs and more often than not they lose the next fight out. Ruiz is more talented than most of the other heavyweights, but his refusal so far in his career to get in the best possible shape does not bode well for a long reign.
Don’t worry, fighting an even older Luis Ortiz should be safe, but shouldn’t we see Wilder vs Fury next just in case? Wilder’s level of competition has been pathetic for a man with over 40 fights, but since he knocks out journeyman spectacularly he is getting a pass. By the way, he did lose to Fury and the only reason Wilder took the fight was because he thought Fury would be easy pickings after that long layoff.
I know the competition was weak, but Fury is not just the most complete boxer in the heavyweight division, but more importantly, he is most marketable. The Rocky IV ring entrance was genius, the style he fought in was exciting and the singing was as always entertaining (I said entertaining, not good). Joshua looks like he is always repeating what Hearn has told him to say and Wilder tries to play the bad guy but usually comes off as just a moron screaming for attention.
After Saturday night’s performance there’s no doubt about this now. For the people that said he was ducking Wilder, I think it is now clear what Fury was doing even for his harshest critics. The first time he fought Wilder he was not completely ready after just two fights with guys that were worse than Tom Schwarz. Plus the rematch needed to be sold after a pathetic 300k PPV buys the first go around. Fury has now accomplished making this a super-fight with an entertaining win by him. To Wilder’s credit, he also sold it with a dominant display in his last fight. Most importantly Fury seems to be improving while Wilder plateaued off a few years ago and the best thing that Wilder could do right now would be to get a real trainer because Mark Breland is not that. Breland has the job because he is one of Shelly Finkel’s guys.
Right or wrong the heavyweight is still the glamour division and the three title matchups delivered two impressive stoppages and an all-time upset. Intrigue has suddenly come to the big boys. The question now will be can they capitalize on it? The next year or two all of the sudden looks to have some fascinating prospects, which is good for boxing.