“I TRIED my best and gave it everything I’d got,” said Tony Bellew after Oleksandr Usyk sent him spraying through the ropes and clinging to consciousness in round eight. “Make sure you clap him, he’s a great fighter. He’s a better fighter than me, he’s the best I ever fought.”
It was a brutal ending yet Bellew – in a way that only Bellew can – decorated that savage conclusion with elegance and honesty. It was the night that “Bomber” finally went full circle. Once the angriest of young men, Bellew exits the sport as a gentleman whose sportsmanship and determination should act as inspiration to all.