It looks like we will finally have an undisputed heavyweight champion.
After months of negotiations amid a global pandemic, WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury and WBO, IBF and WBA champion Anthony Joshua signed a two-fight deal on the dotted line. to make history as the first undisputed heavyweight champion of the four belt era. A location has not yet been determined, but both parties have agreed and all systems are working.
You are excited?
You should be.
MORE: Tyson Fury Says Anthony Joshua Has “Confidence Issues”
Heavyweight boxing has seen a rebound in recent years after a hiatus when the Klitschko brothers ruled the sport with an iron fist during the 2000s. They rarely competed in the United States and a lack of competition caused the division was less attractive. But the rise of Fury and Joshua, along with Deontay Wilder, has brought boxing’s biggest division back into the spotlight. And there couldn’t be two better fighters at the moment.
In one corner you’ll have Fury, the undefeated Gypsy King, whose return to the ring after suffering from mental health problems, alcoholism and extreme weight gain became a riveting narrative. After leaving the sport to rebuild his life in 2015 following his victory over Wladimir Klitschko, he returned three years later as a man on a mission. Somehow the three-year absence made him an even better fighter and he shocked the boxing world when he fought the awkward Wilder in a split draw.
In the comeback fight last February, Fury (30-0-1, 21 KOs) dominated and stopped Wilder in the seventh round to remain undefeated and claim the WBC crown.
In the other corner, you’ll have Anthony Joshua, a human specimen that appears to have been molded from a bodybuilding magazine. Possibly the world’s biggest boxing star, the Briton took home gold at the 2012 Olympics and swept the heavyweight division from the moment he turned pro in 2013. A knockout machine, Joshua pulverized his opponents with a fierce ability to separate a fighter’s body from his body. senses as he racked up 22 straight wins with 21 knockouts as he became the unified heavyweight champion with his brilliant eleventh round TKO against Klitschko.
But then he was stunned at his American debut against Andy Ruiz and had to pick up the pieces of his boxing career. He did just that by winning a dominant unanimous decision in the rematch and set the stage for this massive showdown by eliminating Kubrat Pulev in the ninth round of their December clash.
And now we are here. There are no more hurdles to clear as it looks like a proposed third fight between Fury and Wilder has been shelved and Oleksandr Usyk will wait his turn before charging as a mandatory for the WBO title from Joshua.
Aside from being the biggest fight in British boxing history, it is simply a massive affair between two fighters who couldn’t be more different.
They always say that styles make fights, but also stories. If you wanted to invest in a narrative, this would be the one. You could support Fury, who battled mental health issues to get to where he is today. Or, you could endorse Joshua, the charming monster of a man who combines a look made for magazine covers with a cruelty that only his opponents have to deal with. You can’t go wrong, but you will be entertained.
Their styles are also so different that they will lead to an intriguing showdown between the two Goliaths. Joshua is a search and destroy fighter who learned to moderate his focus after being stopped by Ruiz. Now there are more nuances to his destructive ways as he opts to be a strategist with a violent streak, as evidenced by his knockout of Pulev. With that new wrinkle in your game, it will be difficult to handle. But if one fighter can handle it, it’s Fury.
Fury’s granite chin and massive size are combined with a delicacy rarely seen in the heavyweight division. He doesn’t lump around the ring like most 200-plus pound fighters. Instead, he glides with flawless grace that confuses his opponents before lowering the boom with his punches.
This will be a violent ballet that will be fascinating and terrifying in equal measure. One hit can end any fighter’s night and the world will be on edge to see who wins.
And they have already signed the rematch, so no matter how the first fight ends, fans will get an immediate comeback fight. And that’s what boxing is all about. It is best to face the best without politics in between. Promoters have cast aside their egos, opponents have cleared the way, and now the titans of boxing will collide in an epic display of sweet science. There is nothing better than this.
The only question is where will you be when this historic night of action takes place?
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.