Wilder vs. Fury an Action-Packed Draw

By Caryn A. Tate on December 2, 2018
Wilder vs. Fury an Action-Packed Draw
Fury proved to be an incredibly difficult target for Deontay Wilder. (Esther Lin/Showtime)

Tonight, we had the best, most compelling fight in the division since Wladimir Klitschko fought Anthony Joshua…

LOS ANGELES, California—Heavyweight boxing is seeing a resurgence in popularity, and tonight, we had the best, most compelling fight in the division since Wladimir Klitschko fought Anthony Joshua.

From a raucous Staples Center in Los Angeles, California, longtime WBC world champion Deontay “The Bronze Bomber” Wilder (40-0-1, 39 KOs) defended his title against former world title holder Tyson “The Gypsy King” Fury (27-0-1, 19 KOs).

Wilder has knocked out every opponent he’s ever faced (he stopped Bermane Stiverne last year in their rematch). Earlier this year, when he took on the toughest contender out there in Luis Ortiz, he delivered a riveting and impressive performance, overcoming adversity in the middle rounds when he was stunned by Ortiz. He prevailed and ended up stopping the Cuban in the tenth. He’s held the belt for nearly four years, yet it was Fury’s fans, who traveled all the way from the United Kingdom, who were most vocal and passionate in the crowd tonight. In fact, one would have thought the bout took place in Britain from the crowd noise. During the fight it was different, though: chants of “USA” could easily be heard at times.

Fury defeated then-champion Wladimir Klitschko in 2015, dethroning the ten-year champion—something few thought would happen at the time. Things spiraled out of control for Fury after that feat, with “The Gypsy King” falling into addiction and depression. He failed two drug tests, one for cocaine and one for a steroid, and was later stripped of his titles. Since then, Fury has made an impressive comeback, losing approximately 150 pounds of weight and returning to the ring. Yet he left uncle and former trainer Peter Fury earlier this year and by reports hasn’t spoken with him or cousin Hughie Fury for months. One has to wonder how that change will impact him and his performances, if at all.

Wilder weighed in at 212.5 pounds on Friday, the lightest he’s been since 2009 (a year after turning pro). Fury, weighing in yesterday at 256.5, outweighing the champion by a whopping 44 pounds.

Prior to the bout, referee Jack Reiss advised both fighters of his expectations: he wanted a clean fight; if either of them should get hurt, Reiss asked them both to show him that they are fit to continue (specifically: “nod your head yes, and verbally tell me, ‘yes,’ when I ask if you’re okay.”). He clarified that he would not tolerate any rabbit punches behind the head; no “steering” with the jab hand (he asked the boxers to “use [the jab]”) and hitting with the power hand; no forearming, shoving the head up, and hitting with the other hand. Reiss also specified that, should the fighters end up on the inside and one of them have an arm tied up, Reiss expects that fighter to use his free hand in any legal spot, and that he didn’t want to have to break them up because whoever got inside worked their way there and earned it.

The WBC requested that the California State Athletic Commission employ the use of instant video replay, so that if there should be any question about something that transpired (like a cut and whether it came from a headbutt or a punch), the replay would be used between rounds to verify Reiss’ call.

Fury can be difficult to time, what with his near constant movement and mobility, and that proved true tonight too from the opening bell. It was astounding that a 6’9”, 256-pound man could move the way he did and for as long as he did, particularly in light of the drug addictions, the weight gain, and the two year layoff.

But move he did, and he did it constantly. He proved to be an incredibly difficult target for Wilder. With most boxing fundamentals, what makes the biggest difference in a fight is often deceptively simple when it’s broken down: things like a good, consistent jab; proper foot placement; and, as with tonight’s fight, movement and feinting, can make all the difference. Fury reminded us all of that.

The first couple of rounds were feel-out rounds, with both Wilder and Fury having their moments. In the fourth, Wilder drew blood from Fury’s nose. Nothing particularly significant landed, but it was notable because Fury frequently wiped at it throughout the rest of the bout.

As the rounds progressed, there was consistent back-and-forth action. As I expected, Wilder wasn’t completely stymied by Fury’s awkwardness and movement the way Klitschko was, but he did throw a bit less than normal and certainly missed more than he usually does. Part of that is because Wilder has a tendency to headhunt, which is typical for such tall heavyweights. But even if he aimed for Fury’s chest, he may have landed more since Fury is good about his head movement.

Wilder landed a few good, clean shots at the end of the eighth. But Fury’s constant movement and frequent feinting, as well as his consistent use of the jab, prevented Wilder from landing much of significance.

Fury went down from a clean right hand in round nine. He beat the count, nodding and appearing clear-headed. Wilder rushed in for the kill as the crowd roared. Fury fought back, throwing a nice hook that caught Wilder but didn’t deter him. As he tends to do, Wilder was caught when he was throwing wild in his excitement and was briefly stunned. He kept coming, yet Fury made it through the round.

In round 10, Fury appeared to have recovered, landing a few shots on Wilder as if to show him he was still in the fight.

In the 11th, Wilder touched Fury to the body with the right hand and it appeared to hurt the bigger man. But it was still Fury’s round, as he kept letting his hands go and making Wilder miss more than he landed.

In the final stanza, Wilder dropped Fury with a terrific left hook upstairs. Fury landed flat on his back, staring up at the lights, as referee Jack Reiss counted over him. It appeared Fury was done, not moving a muscle. Yet Tyson rose, moving sideways on his feet to satisfy Reiss’ request to show him he was fit to continue, and battled back. He even proceeded to clown Wilder again near the end of the round.

The official scorecards read 115-111 for Wilder; 114-110 for Fury; and 113-113, resulting in a split draw. It was actually a fair result, as there were some legitimately close rounds that could have gone either way and then two knockdowns scored for Wilder.

After the contest, Wilder said, “I was rushing my punches. When I do that, I’m not accurate.

“When we have the rematch, I guarantee you it’ll be different.”

Fury stated unequivocally: “These are the two best heavyweights in the world right here. Nevermind anyone else,” with an obvious jab at Anthony Joshua, who has not yet fought either Wilder or Fury.

Hopefully we see the rematch very soon. The fans deserve it, and these two terrific fighters deserve to have closure.

Check out more of Caryn’s work at http://www.CarynATate.com and follow her on Twitter@carynatate

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  1. Koolz 12:14pm, 12/03/2018


    Fury Road vs Wilder Wild Man!

    That’s Better!

  2. Kid Blast 06:46pm, 12/02/2018

    Mau, I doubt if that was a flash knockdown. I think he caught him right below the head and above the ear and that translates to an equilibrium issues. Your scoring is logical, however, but I had it 113-113. We are close.

  3. Mau-Mauing The Flak Catchers 06:37pm, 12/02/2018

    This fight was far from “action packed.” I wouldn’t even call it that entertaining. The only thing memorable about this fight was watching Fury regain his feet after being leveled in the final round. It ranks up there with Shavers vs. Holmes II and Frazier vs Ali I IMO. Fury takes a narrow decision. If not for the flash knockdown in the 9th round and the knockdown in the 12 round, Fury wins this one convincingly. Even with the knockdowns, I see Fury as the winner.

  4. Mau-Mauing The Flak Catchers 06:28pm, 12/02/2018

    Fury wins rounds 1-4. Uneventful rounds,  Fury was the only one doing much of anything while Deontay spent the time posing. Round 5 goes to Wilder. Round 6 back to Fury. Agree with Koolz, Fury clowning too much. This could have been so easy for Fury. Round 7 is even, another snoozer. Round 8 and 9 for Wilder. WEAK knockdown in Round 9. More of an off balance Fury then anything, the punch lands on Fury’s neck/shoulder area. If a knockdown round can be scored 10-9 than this is the one. Rounds 10 & 11 go back to the Gypsy King. Round 12 goes to Wilder obviously. Wasn’t a weak knockdown here. How in the hell, Fury gets back up is AMAZING. Kudos to Wilder for having that kind of power in the 12th round. I score this fight 7-4-1 for Fury. My score reads 114-113 for the winner and NEW CHAMPION Tyson Fury.

  5. Kid Blast 05:45pm, 12/02/2018

    Geezuz KOOLZ, calm down. They will fight again—-and for much more money. With Ortiz and AJ, The heavyweight picture seems very bright. Usyk can be added but not just yet. He needs 2 or 3 fights first.

    I am satisfied with the 113 because I can get there mathematically/logically but that’s just IMHO and that of the UK JUDGE!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. Koolz 04:35pm, 12/02/2018

    Judge Alejandro Rochin

    There is already an investigation by the British board into it.  WOW that was fast.  I’ll just sit back and watch what happens.


  7. Koolz 04:25pm, 12/02/2018

    I hate to say this but I think Usyk would destroy Wilder and KO him.

    I don’t think Usyk would even be hit during the fight.  he is much better then Fury.



  8. Koolz 03:58pm, 12/02/2018

    Mau-Mauing The Flak Catchers

    best I could find.  Try and find a better one tomorrow.

  9. Mau-Mauing The Flak Catchers 03:53pm, 12/02/2018

    Koolz…. Tanks for the link, breh!!!

  10. Koolz 03:10pm, 12/02/2018

    I hope the best for Stevenson he needs to retire after he is out of coma.
    His family needs to come first!

  11. Koolz 03:08pm, 12/02/2018

    Judge Alejandro Rochin

    I am contacting this idiot and looking into who pays who…

    Now remember Wilder got to recover with the Ortiz fight.  I said “I hope they don’t pull any of that BS”.  well who are they…

    I won’t say who they are…I know who they are. 

    In any case it’s time to expose Alejandro Rochin.

  12. Koolz 03:01pm, 12/02/2018

    so what the heck is Fury doing!  He has amazing Movement and makes Wilder look like a fool but he fails to set up Combos by throwing after his jabs

    It’s Jab, jab, move to side hook , body shot….anything to get close and open up.  Wilder can’t fight on the inside.  And he allows him self to get hit by one of those silly Windmill style Hooks in the later rounds.

    Fury clowned to much and that is why they are calling this a draw.  The guy could have stopped Wilder but he clowns around a bit to much.  That’s fine if he wants to do that but he also needs to engage more then just ducking and weaving.

    After watching Bivol fight all these boxing matches I am watching are hard to watch..

  13. Koolz 02:53pm, 12/02/2018


    Fury vs Wilder
    hard to find this fight.  This guy just blabs the whole time turn the sound off.

    I’ll post something better when I can find it.

    Bad on Fury allowing Wilder to even catch him and Knock him down.

  14. Koolz 02:51pm, 12/02/2018

    I would love to share that Fury fight I mean Fury obviously won it. 

    Instead I will post this fight!  We’ll get a rematch I hope!

    Superman vs Gvozdyk


  15. don from prov 01:19pm, 12/02/2018

    Enjoyed the write-up but wouldn’t agree the fight was “action packed”—

    Fury out-landed Wilder 84-71 (quoted stat): If that low punch output was due to defensive genius as opposed to Fury’s good defense, I might have been pulled into the bout more.  Might also have enjoyed it more if there had been a steady tension as well, which I guess some found in waiting to see if Wilder would take Fury out—me? I’d like to feel the danger more acutely on a round by round basis.  Fury getting up and back into the last round was interesting, or could bring up interesting questions.  Anyway, some were talking of Shavers vs. Holmes in looking at the KD, but I think Holmes was more badly hurt in that fight than Fury was in this one.  Fury did go down hard but seemed to be present and composed—sure was when he got up.  So, in the super-tanker era, is the hardest punching HW someone who is weighing in at around 215 pounds?  The sky might actually fall around all of our heads if Uysk (sp.?) turns out to be able to box with these guys.

  16. Kid Blast 11:06am, 12/02/2018

    “Watching on TV all the ShowTime crew were giving every round but 1 to Fury until the 9th round knockdown and then only gave the 12th to Wilder. Thus according to them Fury won 9 rounds at 10-9 and Wilder won 3 rounds 10-8 X2 and a 10-9. However, I think Wilder could have been given several other rounds. The crew fell into “group think” and confirmation bias and didn’t realize some rounds could have reasonably gone either way. They probably dragged listeners with them.  This is the problem with all boxing announcers in this day and age. They make observations and spend so much time agreeing with each other that they selectively “see” what they “say”.

  17. thrashem 08:24am, 12/02/2018

    Wouldn’t pay to watch this match but will watch for free.
    Sounds as predicted. Fury ran, Wilder chased… Fury used jab to keep Wilder away. Boring… At least the mouthy Neanderthal got floored twice.

  18. Mau-Mauing The Flak Catchers 08:01am, 12/02/2018

    Koolz… Where you at breh? Haven’t seen the fight yet but Fury obviously lost the two rounds where he was floored. Hmm, so that means 4 points to make up for in the other 10 rounds. The previous commenters say FURY ROAD was robbed. Being interesting to see this fight.

  19. Ceylon 07:09am, 12/02/2018

    Fair result? From TWO RIGGED JUDGES???

  20. edwin 12:46am, 12/02/2018

    Caryn A. Tate: “It was actually a fair result.”


    Fury clearly won.

  21. James 12:41am, 12/02/2018

    Oh, come on. Fury won that fight. Daylight robbery. The judge who had it 115-11 for Wilder should be arrested.

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