One of the biggest fights of the year and one of the biggest fights the Heavyweight division has to offer is now just days away, as WBC champion Deontay Wilder (40-0, 39 KOs) is set to defend his title against lineal champion Tyson Fury (27-0, 19 KOs) live on Showtime Pay-Per-View Saturday, December 1, 2018 from Staples Center in Los Angeles, California.
Wilder and Fury, both unbeaten in their respective careers, undoubtedly represent two of the very best Heavyweights in the world, making this matchup incredibly intriguing from a stylistic standpoint, as it pits a heavy-handed knockout artist in Wilder up against a man known more for his pure boxing skills in Fury.
Also, the storyline behind the bout is one for the ages, as there’s a ton at stake for both men.
For Wilder, Fury represents the big-name opponent that has eluded him up until this point in his career. If he can get by “The Gypsy King,” Wilder will legitimize himself as a true champion.
For Fury, meanwhile, this fight is all about redemption. In 2015, he shocked the masses and dethroned longtime titleholder Wladimir Klitschko. After the bout, however, he went into a downward spiral that included drug and alcohol addiction and severe mental health issues.
He returned to action last June following a layoff that spanned more than two years and has won two tune-up fights since. Against “The Bronze Bomber,” Fury will look to complete his comeback and once again claim Heavyweight gold.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at the three keys to victory for Tyson Fury ahead of Saturday’s highly-anticipated bout.
Make Deontay Wilder Miss
This sounds obvious, as the key to winning any boxing match is to hit and not be hit, but this will be crucial to Tyson Fury’s success given the power Deontay Wilder possesses. To be fair, one shot from Wilder could easily end Fury’s night, or at the very least, completely change the trajectory of the fight.
Luckily for Fury, he’s typically done a pretty solid job of defending himself. In fact, his defense is one of his best weapons. For a man of his size, he moves incredibly well, switching stances and creating confusion for his opponent.
However, what’s also important to note here is that Fury has been dropped before, as he hit the canvas following a clean right hand from Steve Cunningham during their fight in 2013. He ended up rebounding and scoring a stoppage later in that fight, but he may not be able to do that should he eat a big shot from Wilder. The Bronze Bomber simply hits too hard.
Because of that, making Wilder miss should be of the utmost importance to Fury. If he can avoid those big shots that Wilder will undoubtedly be looking for, he’ll be able to implement his own game plan, which is likely to outbox and pick apart the former Olympian.
Establish the Jab and Land It Often
Although certainly possible, it’s unlikely that Fury will knock out Wilder, as he isn’t necessarily known for his fight-ending power. Instead, the best path to victory for The Gypsy King involves him being the more methodical and more technical boxer in order to outpoint Wilder on route to a decision victory.
In order to achieve this goal, Fury will need to establish his jab early and land it often. In doing so, he’ll be able to establish a range that he feels comfortable fighting at while disrupting the plan of Wilder. Also, consistently landing the jab will allow Fury to build off of it in order to land big shots of his or to string together combinations.
To win this bout, Fury will likely need to be the more active and more accurate boxer. That all begins with the jab.
Keep Up The Pace for 12 Rounds
After his win over Klitschko, Fury gained a tremendous amount of weight. Of course, he was dealing with a plethora of personal issues that likely led to this, but he’s been criticized before for not staying in shape between fights and he’s admitted himself that he’s dropped a significant amount of weight prior to fights in the past.
Against Wilder, Fury will need to be in the best shape of his life. And not only that, but he’ll need to establish a pace and keep that pace for the duration of the fight. If he’s able to outwork and overwhelm Wilder, that will only make his job easier.
On the contrary, however, if he begins to slow down or tire as the fight drags on, that could allow Wilder the opportunity to land the big shot he’ll be searching for. And as previously mentioned, it only takes one from The Bronze Bomber.