- Tyson Fury just knocked Deontay Wilder out in the seventh round after an aggressive masterclass.
- Wilder took a fearsome knockout record into his 11th successive world title fight against Fury.
- But Fury the boxer became a puncher at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, as he kept beating his American adversary down.
- The Gypsy King rules once again.
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LAS VEGAS – Tyson Fury stopped Deontay Wilder in the seventh round after an aggressive masterclass.
Both fighters made grand entrances. Wilder’s mask and costume alone cost him $US60,000, according to the LA Times. Fury also spared no expense with his outfit or entrance: He was carried to the ring on a throne – the Gypsy King had arrived.
The two giants, the 6-foot-7 American and 6-foot-9 Brit, represent a new breed of heavyweight. Not only do they possess their own specialist skill – for Wilder, it’s absurd punching power in his right hand, and for Fury, it’s extraordinary, if unconventional, ability – they are also ushering in a new era of intense interest in boxing’s glamour division.
A thriving heavyweight scene is good for the sport of boxing. At the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on Saturday, the travelling British fans, who had been bellowing songs all week, made it feel like a significant fight week in the combat calendar.
And it was. It was massive.
It was a week of intrigue, of drama, and of hype. Big time heavyweight boxing is back. And now, no big man is as big time as Tyson Fury after he dominated Deontay Wilder, finishing him in the seventh round.
In the opening round, in front of an absorbed, enthralled, and lively crowd, Fury stamped his authority early with his strong jab – a jab that even appeared to tilt Wilder’s head back. At times, he’d mix up his lead punch by throwing a crisp left hook.
In the opening rounds, he took Wilder’s notorious right hand away by leaving his long left out. That proved enough to throw Wilder’s own probing jab off, something he uses to tee up his power punch. By the end of the second, Fury was mauling Wilder by the ropes – much to the delight of his travelling support.
The third was one of the greatest rounds of Fury’s entire career. All the tall tales he’d told in the lead-up to this fight – that he was masturbating seven times a day, that he was dipping his fists in gasoline, and that he was going to win, by knockout, then binge on cocaine and prostitutes– well, one of those looked like it was true all along.
Tactically, he was gunning for the knockout. That much was clear since he had Wilder on his arse twice, though the second was ruled a slip. Wilder, yes, the baddest man on the planet for the new-generation – the one who has spent his career knocking opponents to the floor – was now the one looking wobbly and in danger of being down and out for good.
In the fifth, Fury, who weighed in heavy at 273 pounds, used that mass to tie Wilder up then lean all over him – an old Wladimir Klitschko trick to tire fading fighters. Then he knocked Wilder down again with an energy-depleting body shot. Everything Fury did was designed to wear Wilder out, so even if he didn’t stop him, Wilder would be unable to throw anything of substance late in the fight. But he was going to stop him.
Fury’s promoters, Bob Arum of Top Rank and Frank Warren of Queensberry Promotions, were right all along. This was a new Fury. There was a reason he left his former trainer, Ben Davison, to join Javan “SugarHill” Steward, who could teach him the Kronk Gym and the late Emmanuel Steward’s techniques of making your punches count. They planned a bold and risky strategy and boy, did it pay off.
Nobody had roughed Wilder up like this – only Fury, for one night only, as the referee Kenny Bayless waved the bout off in the seventh round. Fury had done it. He had won by stoppage, a statement every bit as impressive as his 2015 bamboozling of Klitschko, when he became the unified heavyweight champion.
Now he’s a champion again – a deserving one, as he beat his American adversary easily, inflicting a debut defeat onto Wilder, even cuffing him so hard round the ear it bled from the inside, and he could not attend the post-event press conference.
The Gypsy King, the new WBC title holder, rules once again.