The best fight in combat sports this weekend is between Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury. This fight will help in determining who the undisputed heavyweight champion is. Both of these men, with a win, will have a claim to that title with only a justified objection from Anthony Joshua standing between them and glory.
World Boxing Council (WBC) Heavyweight Championship
There is now a trio of fighters at the top of the Heavyweight division with an actual claim to the “baddest man on the planet” title. One of the most recent fighters to make such a claim is 33-year-old American, Deontay Wilder. Wilder has been on an incredible run, and although he was fed easy wins early in his career to pad his KO record, he has answered all his critics with impressive knockouts of increasingly difficult assignments.
In Wilder’s last fight against Luis Ortiz, pundits correctly stated that this would be the toughest fight of his career so far. Fighting through adversity and being hurt several times, Wilder found his range and knocked out Ortiz in the 10th round. This TKO was easily the best win of Wilder’s career.
Another fighter that lays claim to the title is 33-year-old Tyson Fury. The best win of Tyson Fury’s career was almost three years ago to the day on November 28, 2015. Fury convincingly and dominantly beat the lineal and undisputed champion of over ten years, Wladimir Klitschko. This win was supposed to be the beginning of the Tyson Fury era, but instead Fury’s demons took over, and he went on a two-and-a-half year hiatus, mainly using this time to do drugs and drink heavily. During this time Fury also gained weight, to the tune of adding 150 lbs and most fans and pundits thought we had seen the last of Tyson Fury as a legitimate boxer.
Fast forward to 2018 and we have now seen Fury win the initial battle against his vices and weight ,and has had two tune up fights, one in June and one in August. In those tune up fights, you could tell that the old Fury is still somewhere inside of this new version. He still uses great footwork and boxing skills to pepper his opponent with stiff jabs and counter punches. He is still active and went 10 rounds in his last fight. Although a lot of his offense still seems to be there, his defense seems to have stayed the same. He was able to get away with some of his lapses with lesser competition, but as he’s shown in the past, Fury is susceptible to counter right hands from long opponents.
During the lead up to this fight, Wilder has grown increasingly more agitated and aggravated with Fury and how this fight is being promoted. Fury’s “hiatus” and drug use are being softened, something Wilder says would not happen to him if the tables were turned. Fury has also pushed Wilder during the press tour physically and mentally which climaxed in a brawl between the fighters’ camps at one of the last press stops. Wilder is taking this personally and Fury is using gamesmanship to get an edge. Fury wants Wilder off of his game so he can take advantage of any mistakes that are made.
Wilder is tall and lean, 6’7”, 212.4 lbs, Fury is a tall and massive 6’9” 256.6 lbs. This is a classic heavyweight bout, with one side, Wilder, being the puncher, and the other, Fury, being the boxer. Wilder will need to show even more of his boxing acumen to stop a fighter that has never lost and Fury will have to show that his skills have not eroded enough to allow an easy win for him three years ago to beat him today.
I am picking Deontay Wilder via KO in the 7th round.
What: Wilder vs Fury for the WBC Heavyweight Championship
Where to watch: Showtime PPV $74.99 or stream on Showtime.com or Showtime App
When: Saturday December 1st, 2018
Time: 8:00 PM CST