Deontay Wilder 42 (41 KOs)-0-1 will defend his WBC Heavyweight World Title in a rematch against Tyson Fury 29 (20 KOs)-0-1 at the MGM Grand Las Vegas this Saturday broadcast on ESPN+ in the USA and BT Sport Box Office in the UK.
I’m really struggling with this one.
Most boxing fights when they come around are pretty simple to breakdown, let me explain myself.
When you take a typical high-level boxing fight, say Spence vs Porter what I typically do is look at their tendencies in their previous fights. So, I’d say something along the lines of “Spence targets the body, using a solid jab as cover, whereas Porter lunges in with left hooks using head movement to avoid shots on the way in”.
Following this I’d pose a set of questions for the reader to answer such as “can Spence deal with the inside physicality of Porter?” and then try to answer this myself leading to a nice little conclusion of who I think is going to win.
The issue with heavyweight boxing is that I believe there is a level of uncertainty that there really isn’t in other divisions, and when you take a fighter like Wilder you can do all the breakdown you want but often it just comes down to, can Wilder land the right hand?
Even so, I’m going to do my best to do a breakdown, even though that in my mind this is one of the few fights that I can see any see any scenario playing out, from knockout to points either side.
And yes… to either Fury or Wilder fanboys, I can indeed see a scenario of Fury stopping Wilder, and I can really see a scenario of Wilder winning on points.
I suppose it’s only really right to start with the first fight. A fight that despite what most people will try to tell you wasn’t that great. It had a great last round, sure, but let me put it to you this way, how many times have you re-watched the fight? Not the last round, but the actual whole fight. I suspect the answer will be none.
I have rewatched the first fight before writing this article, and let me tell you, in the first 6 rounds there really wasn’t much going on.
Ahhh what a nice slick little lead on to my follow up point.
The fact that basically nothing happened in the first 6 rounds has always made me a little bit confused on why everyone seemed to say “Fury was robbed”, especially if you add in the knockdowns later on.
For a bit of transparency, I’ll stick my scorecard down below. This was the scorecard I came to on a rewatch.
Round 1- Fury (close)
Round 2- Wilder
Round 3- Wilder (close)
Round 4- Wilder (close)
Round 5- Fury
Round 6- Fury
Round 7- Fury
Round 8- Fury
Round 9- Wilder (knockdown)
Round 10- Fury
Round 11- Fury (close)
Round 12- Wilder (knockdown)
Final score- 113-113
I understand that this is not a scorecard that wins you many friends in the UK, but I put it there to pose a question to everyone that says Fury was robbed, watch the fight again and look at my scorecard, even if you disagreed I’d be surprised if you had no idea where I was coming from.
To me, the last 6 rounds were pretty simple to score, but in the first 6 there simply wasn’t enough going on from either man to say that Fury gave a “boxing lesson”, because he didn’t. Yes, he made Wilder look silly missing, but what’s the point if the only thing you’re doing in return is sticking your tongue out.
I think people got way too caught up in the act that Fury was doing in giving the illusion that he was winning rather than simply scoring the shots blow for blow.
And, even though my first fight post fight seems to have gone AWOL, I do remember me scoring the first fight as a draw at the time as well. So, even if you think I’m wrong, at least I’m consistently wrong.
What I did notice was that in the first 6 when Wilder was still fresh Fury wasn’t having everything his own way in the jab exchanges. Wilder is by no means a masterclass boxer, but like Dillian Whyte his ungainliness and lack of balance hides the fact that when he keeps it simple, he’s far from a slob. Just his hand speed, athleticism and sheer length makes him a handful even if it’s not the prettiest.
And to be honest I wasn’t surprised about this, Wilder does have skills but he’s one of those fighters that’s just too weird with his body attributes: insane power, poor balance, skinny body type etc to box in a traditional fashion. He makes his skills work for him, and you cant really argue with that. On paper Nazim Hamed, or Roy Jones boxed terribly, but they made their skills work for them. Textbook boxing is a guideline, not the law.
Plug for my vid on Wilder’s boxing skills below…
What I was surprised about however was how badly Wilder seemed to gas down the stretch. I wrote down “Wilder gassed” next to round 9 and I can only assume it was from all the shots he was missing by. Despite being a puncher, Wilder is not a volume guy, and all the fights he’s had bar maybe the Szpilka fight have been fought at a low pace, and I can only assume that Wilder simply isn’t used to missing as much as he was made to in the first fight.
As for Fury, he did what I expected of him, better actually. He was still sharp enough on his feet to make Wilder look silly in the second half of the fight, and for the most part, the jittery hand movements and upper body rolls were enough to keep him largely out of trouble the whole night, bar the 12th.
And now we get to that point in the article where I have to pick what I think will happen in the rematch.
I very much doubt anyone is taking stock of my pre-fight predictions, but Wilder is up there with me having the worst record of all active fighters in terms of actually getting it right.
Just to give you an idea, I said: Ortiz beats Wilder, Wilder beats Fury, Wilder beats Breazeale and, Ortiz beats Wilder in the rematch.
So… I’m by no means an expert of this guy.
But I never sit on the fence, so I’m going to pick one guy, and that is going to be Fury.
I can’t say I’m a fan of either fan base, “deluded” or “gullible” you can use to describe either group, but I say Fury wins it on points.
I think we’ll see more of a Wilder who’s looking to box this time around, as I think he will have realised that loading up and looking for the big shot only helps Fury. I mean that shot in the 12th wasn’t a wide swinging hook, it actually came quite straight, and Fury I think will stick pretty much to what he knows boxing from range changing the levels and looking to frustrate.
On a side note, Fury has always been a fighter to fight down to the level of his opposition so I don’t see his performance against Wallin as being too concerning although who knows what’ll happen if that cut opens up again.
And like the first fight I do expect Fury to lose rounds, especially if Wilder targets the body.
A nice little trick that Wilder uses is fake a right hand to the head, and then once Fury bends at the waist to try and roll it, Wilder will come through with a left to the body that will land on the head as Fury bends down.
Hope that makes sense,
0:50 in round 3 is the example of this, since despite writing every week I’m not exactly Shakespeare in painting a picture,
But what I do think is that little bit of extra foot speed that Fury has in this rematch will be the overriding factor, especially if Wilder tires late, and I see Fury using that foot speed to land the occasional right hand or combination and win the rounds.
In short where I saw the first 6 rounds nip and tuck in the first, I think it’ll be more like the first four this time around with Fury winning enough of the middle and late rounds to get a decision, maybe even hurting Wilder late.
And no I don’t expect Fury’s “two rounds” prediction to have anything behind it. I see it as another mind game, I think it’ll be more or less the same style that Fury adopts against a Wilder that will be more cautious and a little more precise in his attack.
I’m thinking maybe a 9 rounds to 3 type of fight in favor of Fury with Wilder getting a knockdown early-ish, but also getting hurt late.
There I said it
So if my record says anything, don’t put your money on Fury points.
Because if a blind person can on average pick better outcomes than me… well I’m not exactly the person you want to be talking to when that bell rings.
On the undercard Emanuel Navarrete 30 (26 KOs)-1 (0 KOs)-0 will defend his WBO Super Bantamweight title against Jeo Santisima 19 (16 KOs)-2 (0 KOs)-0.