Cannon Fodder for a Good Gentleman
Names mean nothing to Tyson Fury. He was a better fighter when he and Del Boy first met, and he knows he’s a better fighter now…
On July 26 at the Phones4U Arena in Manchester, England, 25-year-old Tyson Fury (22-0, 16 KOs), a homeboy from Manchester, meets 30-year-old Dereck Chisora (20-4, 13 KOs), from London by way of Mbare, Zimbabwe, for a second time.
Their first fight, on July 23, 2011, ended with Fury romping to a unanimous decision. The 6-foot-9-inch Fury has won all seven of his fights since then, six by early stoppage, but his victims are not exactly a who’s who of credible heavyweight contenders.
Chisora, by contrast, has been even busier than Fury. He has fought nine times since he fought Fury, winning six and losing three. But the three men he lost to have (or in some cases had) a boxing pedigree: Robert Helenius in 2011, and Vitali Klitschko and David Haye in 2012.
But names mean nothing to Tyson Fury. He was a better fighter when he and Del Boy first met, and he knows he’s a better fighter now.
“Chisora was a better fighter three years ago,” said Fury at Monday’s London presser. “His resistance has been worn down, there’s mileage on the clock. If you have a car with 125,000 miles on it, it’s going to blow up if you keep driving it hard down the motorway.”
Fury’s car analogy is a good one. But it brings to mind Adrien Broner’s description of himself as a Ferrari, before he was beaten by an alleged go-kart at the Alamodome Speedway.
Chisora started late and is making up for lost time. He may not be the most skilled heavyweight in history, something he shares with his opponent, but he always comes to fight.
“Dereck Chisora is what he looks like,” Fury continued, “a mug. And he talks like he fights—shit. Chisora looks like a villain. I describe myself as a good gentleman. He’s a journeyman. He’s cannon fodder for me. I’m looking to take him out and then it’s on to the next one.”
Whether Fury is a “good gentleman” or not is open to debate. It depends on what one is used to. But the “next one” of which he spoke, if all goes according to plan, will be heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko, about whom even Fury has his doubts.
“I don’t think Wlad will fight me. I’ve been saying it now for two years. He’s on a lower level to me because of his age. He has been a champion a long time so he may be complacent.”
Klitschko may be complacent, which is understandable considering the dearth of talent in the heavyweight ranks, but that “lower level” stuff needs to be taken with a grain of salt. Even if Fury makes “mincemeat” of Del Boy, as he promised, “I predict Wladimir Klitschko will not fight Tyson Fury when I beat Dereck Chisora, one hundred million per cent. The reason being I wouldn’t want to fight me. I’m young, tall, ambitious—I’m the full package. He’ll vacate or retire beforehand.”
One can’t blame Fury for chomping at the bit. He is big, he is bad, and has destiny written all over him.
Chisora, however, doesn’t buy it.
“He hasn’t moved on in his career since he beat me,” Del Boy said. “I’ve been fighting at a higher level while he’s been fighting nobodies. This time I’ll dump him in a heap in the ring. He’s still got it in the back of his mind that he’s beaten me. He won a battle. I’m going to win the war.”
Chisora’s promoter, Frank Warren, has been through thick and thin with his volatile fighter, but like Tammy Wynette he stands by his man. Warren was attempting to explain why Del Boy lost to Vitali, in a reasonably measured and sedate tone of voice. Many in attendance thought it was relevant. Tyson Fury wasn’t among them.
“It’s all ifs and buts,” he said. “If my granny had a pair of balls, she’d be my granddad.”
And with that may the best man win.
If it’s Thursday, this must be Manchester
Thursday’s presser in Manchester was even more fun than what happened on Monday.
Rather than dominate the proceedings with his verbosity, as he had done in London, Tyson Fury took a different approach.
When asked if he’d care to make an opening statement, Fury said, “All this mumbo-jumbo, great fights and all that—basically, let me tell you straight how it is. Listen, I’m Tyson Fury. I’m the best heavyweight on the planet. This idiot is getting knocked spark out and I’m sick to death of this.”
As if to prove just how “sick to death of this” he was,” Fury stood up, grabbed the microphone and said, “This motherfucker is going to sleep,” whereupon he slammed down the mic, tried to flip over the table in front of him, before storming out of the room.
Chisora, as is his wont, took it all in his stride. He applauded and commented wryly, “What can we say about that? Shall we give him a Golden Globe or not? He needs to get a bit of publicity. He needs people to talk about him. But we just laugh.”
There’s something in the annals of overused phrases about “he who laughs hardest laughs best.” Del Boy may have laughed hardest in Manchester, but the last laugh may belong to Tyson Fury.