Oleksandr Usyk's career is interesting as the current WBA, WBO, and IBF heavyweight world champion has arguably had two hall-of-fame careers in one pro boxing career.
As Usyk became the undisputed cruiserweight division winning each title in his opponent’s hometown, en route to the feat. Usyk would move up to heavyweight and upset Anthony Joshua not once, but twice in order to hold the most titles in the heavyweight division. His clear rival Tyson Fury, who holds the WBC heavyweight title and is the lineal champion, have had words for each other, but nothing has turned into a championship prize fight.
Now one fight exists for Usyk, the undisputed heavyweight title fight with Tyson Fury.
Usyk recently signed with Skills Challenge Promotions, which sees, Amer Abdallah as the director of operations for the organization, who believes the fight can be made with Tyson Fury. As Fury appears to have co-promotional agree Frank Warren’s Queensberry Promotion and Bob Arum’s Top Rank Inc.
When ProBoxTV News talked to Abdallah about a future fight between Usyk and Fury, we got the following.
"I don’t think there needs to be leverage when comes to Tyson Fury,” said Abdallah when speaking to ProBox TV News who pushed back at the idea of Skills Challenge now provides some leverage for Usyk in talks of an undisputed heavyweight bout. “I believe everybody wants the fight. So it is not going to be the kind of negotiation we are used to. Which is going to be a negotiation back-and-forth. We will have a number we will come with and if you know Prince Khaled, which very few people do. He doesn’t negotiate. [He does] here is the number, we’d love to have you here, and if not the deal is off the table. It would be a very, very fair number, and if you come back with anything other than that. [It would be] probably because you are asking for more than the value of the fight…I don’t think we need any type of leverage, a-side, b-side, everybody is going to come out on top when they fight on these cards.”
As ProBox TV News has reflected upon prior, the heavyweight division is currently a house of cards. Whether it is promoters or networks - we have been lacking big heavyweight fights as of late, as we are averaging one per year, for roughly four years now.
Tyson Fury has been on an all-out pop-culture blitz of social media as he has called out WWE superstars, a highly-touted MMA fighter, and former UFC heavyweight champion in Francis Ngannou. Fury is showing he is motivated most by money at this point. Klimas spoke to his frustration in the nearly ten-month process of trying to make a fight with Tyson Fury up until this point when talking to ProBox TV News earlier this year.
"That is always a big difference when one side is going for legacy, and one side is going for the money," Egis Klimas told ProBox TV News. "Whatever happened, that is what happened. Nothing much we can do about it. Fury is Fury. He is of a different mentality. We will see if we can bring that fight back by the end of the year.”
As of now, Oleksandr Usyk is going to make a mandatory world title defense of his WBA heavyweight world title against the number-one contender Daniel Dubois, which is currently targeted for August 26th in Poland. As for Fury, no word on a possible return to the ring. We heard rumblings of Zhilei “Big Bang” Zhang, but Joe Joyce has enacted his rematch clause. Fury fought twice, but in dreadful bouts against Dillian Whyte and Derek Chisora - though Fury is clearly one of the best fighters in the world, it is hard to justify his choice of opponent when Usyk is out there. Even more so, Fury might not fight until the fourth quarter of 2023, leaving fighting fans waiting.
Who is the big loser in all of this - Oleksandr Usyk? A fighter with a quirky personality, who is defined by achievement, not fame. When he can’t go for legacy, his fights mean a lot less as he is a sportsman in the show business world. Usyk needs great fights to get the attention his abilities merit.
Usyk has a chance to be the best cruiserweight in the history of the sport; as his achievements could outweigh Evander Holyfield’s when it is all said and done, but for that to happen he needs to vie for the undisputed heavyweight title.