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The Grueling Truth - Where Legends Speak / Latest Boxing News & Rumors Today / Usyk beats Fury to Win the Heavyweight title

Usyk beats Fury to Win the Heavyweight title: Is Usyk an All-Time Great?

Publish Date: 05/20/2024
Fact checked by: Simon Briffa

Anybody who knows me knows that I was once an avid Boxing fan; that interest has waned over the last few years as fighters fight less and less often. The fights we want to see, for the most part, do not happen. Guys like Canelo Alvarez decide not to fight the best competition, and the Boxing landscape becomes barren of fighters who can become legends. To be a Legend, you have to be active, you have to fight the best, and too often nowadays, that doesn’t happen anymore.

Sure, you get guys like Manny Pacquiao or The Monster Inoue who do this, but for the most part, it doesn’t happen. That brings us to what we witnessed on Saturday afternoon. For the first time in a quarter of a century, Usyk and Fury fought to be the World’s Undisputed Heavyweight champion. This was a huge fight between two highly skilled Heavyweights who had never been beaten. To most people, it was a 50/50 fight.

Tyson Fury had whipped out Deontay Wilder on three occasions and had beaten Wladimir Klitschko during his career. Fury had shown the ability to rise from the canvas and still win. Fury can box your ears off or walk you down and knock you out. Usyk, on the other hand, cleared out the Cruiserweight division much like Evander Holyfield had back in the 1980s.

People were sceptical of Usyk moving up to Heavyweight as they doubted he had the same power as Holyfield. Injuries also slowed his transition to Heavyweight, and his first outing as a Heavyweight against Chazz Witherspoon raised even more concerns. When Usyk was scheduled to fight Anthony Joshua, many thought he would not be big enough to compete; Usyk proved them wrong twice, beating Joshua more easily than the scorecards would suggest.

Usyk defended against Daniel Dubois and was put down by what looked like a body shot to me; he got extra time because it was ruled a low blow. After that extra time, Usyk would turn it on and stop the younger, stronger and bigger Dubois.

So, the Fight of the Century was upon us, as Usyk would fight Fury for all the marbles in the Heavyweight division. Tyson Fury was only a small favorite by now, and the reason for that was a listless win against an MMA fighter named Francis Ngannou, whom Fury barely beat. Fury was even knocked down in that fight.

Fury controlled the action for the first six rounds on Saturday, with Usyk closing fast, and it looked like Usyk would stop Fury before the bell saved Fury. Usyk won a split decision, and it was a razor-close fight, but it was not a robbery or controversial as the right man was awarded the decision.

This article is about more than Saturday’s fight; it is about a man who epitomizes what a great boxer should be. Usyk is a humble, hard-working Boxer who gets the most out of his ability. He was willing to take short money to fight Joshua and Fury. Usyk has spent his entire career fighting in other’s backyards and beating them. He is a true throwback fighter. Is Usyk a top ten all-time heavyweight? That answer would be not yet, but the top twenty. Every possible, and if you judge what he did at Cruiserweight and Heavyweight together, an all-time great, is not a stretch.

In a span of twenty-two fights, he unified an excellent Cruiserweight division and then unified the heavyweight title, but bad for twenty-two fights! If a rematch occurs with a Fury, which you have to believe will happen, it’s still a 50/50 fight to me, but I would favour Usyk, even if by just a little bit. Either way, if Usyk retires, he goes down as an all-time great, and that’s amazing, considering he has fought just twenty-two times as a Pro.

We witnessed a super fight that gave us our money’s worth on Saturday, and that’s an anomaly these days. Much respect must also be given to Tyson Fury, who once again showed the heart of a Lion when hurt in a fight. Hopefully, we get to see a rematch. If we do, it will be another barnburner because these are two highly skilled Boxers who have the courage that a lot of boxers these days no longer have.

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