IN the aftermath of his 2015 victory against Wladimir Klitschko in Dusseldorf, all the talk – serious or otherwise – was of Tyson Fury riding off into the sunset and retiring on a high.
His father, John, and his uncle, Peter, both said the mission had been accomplished and wouldn’t be against Tyson calling it quits with three of the four world heavyweight titles in his possession. Tyson, too, said he wasn’t sure if anything would be able to top that historic night in Germany.
Four and a half years on, the ‘Gypsy King’ has now stopped Deontay Wilder to become the WBC heavyweight champion and his father is once again calling for him to throw in the towel while on top.
“I want my son to retire now,” said John, speaking to Good Morning Britain. “He’s done enough.
“It’s been an uphill battle for him. I want him to pack it in now. I think it’s in the back of his mind. He can’t do anymore. Enough is enough. He’s given his all.”
Fury’s issues, many of which emerged in the months following that 2015 victory against Klitschko, have been well documented. But few know the extent of them like his own father.
“I’ll be honest, I’m sat here today, and I still keep pinching myself because where he was two years ago there was no hope, basically,” John explained.
“He was that low, he went that far back. I didn’t think he was ever going to get back. A light switch just went on and off and here we are today.
“But I just think myself there’s more to life than we see with the eye. There’s got to be. Because he was in such a mess. It was a dark time, when you see a man who was drinking himself to death to escape reality and eating all kinds of food by the bucket load.
“And he was doing it in front of you. When your son stops caring what you think as a father and a parent, that’s time to worry.”
Whether Tyson Fury heeds the words of his father and retires having just secured arguably the best – or at least second best – win of his career remains to be seen. But with a fight against Anthony Joshua on the horizon, and a life-changing payday there for the taking, it is going to take either a very strong or very damaged man to walk away this time.
According to the Mirror, promoter Eddie Hearn has confirmed a deal in principle has been struck for Anthony Joshua to fight Kubrat Pulev at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on June 20.
That’s good news for Pulev, who has been chasing Joshua since 2018, but bad news for everybody else.
After all, this IBF mandatory obligation could turn out to be just one of many reasons the men in suits use to delay the one fight the world wants to see – Anthony Joshua vs. Tyson Fury.
Another obstacle, equally perplexing, is this: Deontay Wilder, the dethroned former WBC heavyweight champion, has 30 days to trigger a rematch clause against Fury. It’s hard to fathom why he would, given the one-sided nature of their second fight on Saturday (February 22), but millions of dollars and a Hail Mary punch might have something to do with it.
Should Wilder fancy his chances, a third fight with Fury will take place later this year. If, however, he opts out, Eddie Hearn says there is a possibility a step-aside agreement with Pulev can be arranged, which would see Fury fight Joshua next.
He told Sky Sports: “He’s (Fury) promoted by Bob Arum predominantly. Frank Warren is also involved, MTK are his management company. I’ve spoken to Top Rank and I’ve spoken to MTK straight after the fight.
“Everybody is very clear on this. Everybody wants this fight – Anthony Joshua, Tyson Fury, MTK, Top Rank, Frank Warren, Matchroom.
“There are some hurdles to overcome on the broadcasting, but nothing too much.
“I promise you this fight will happen. If we have to fight (Kubrat) Pulev, we’ve got to beat Pulev, and if he has to fight Wilder, he’s got to beat Wilder again.
“Both of those things will happen. Fury will beat Wilder again and Joshua will knock Pulev clean out, despite Bob Arum telling us very differently.
“You will get this fight. We will do everything that it takes to make this fight.
“Last time, you had us and Team Wilder and we were locking heads. Right now, you have two guys and two camps that genuinely want and will do everything they can to make this fight. It is the only fight.
“When are we ever going to get the chance of two British world heavyweight champions fighting for the undisputed title against each other? It’s never happened before it will never happen again.
“We’d be clowns, we’d be idiots if we didn’t make this fight. We believe we win the fight, they believe they win the fight, so let’s see it.”
Clowns and idiots conspired to make a pig’s ear of Anthony Joshua and Deontay Wilder unifying the heavyweight division in 2018 and 2019. Let’s hope the same clowns and idiots don’t repeat the same mistakes with this one.