By Barry Holbrook: Tyson Fury’s co-promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank says he’s going to meet with Oleksandr Usyk this week to begin talks to set up a fight between the two heavyweight champions for next year.
The Fury-Usyk deal won’t be signed until after Fury defends his WBC heavyweight title against Derek Chisora on December 3rd. According to Arum, he believes Usyk (20-0, 13 KOs) wants the fight with Fury.
It makes sense for Arum to get off to an early start with the Fury vs. Usyk negotiations, considering that they’re looking at putting it together for February or March next year.
There are only four or five months before the fight takes. The last thing Arum and Fury need is for the negotiations to drag on, as they were in the recent failed talks for a fight against former two-time heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua.
Fury was impatient with the slowness of Team Joshua in looking over the contract, and eventually, the negotiations fell apart after two deadlines set by Tyson weren’t met.
“They want that fight against Tyson Fury,” Bob Arum told Sky Sports about putting together a fight between Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk.
“Egis and Oleksandr will be there, and I’ll be having dinner with them without any question, probably the Thursday night before the [Vasyl Lomachenko] fight, and I’ll have a long discussion with them about their plans and when it could be in their best interests to get the fight on.
“I know they want that fight against Tyson Fury. If there’s anybody around who really has a good chance with Tyson Fury, it’s Usyk.”
Arum will be taken a lot more serious, saying the unbeaten IBF, WBA & WBO champion Usyk has a “good chance” of beating Fury than the 38-year-old journeyman Chisora (33-12, 23 KOs), who he has been praising to create fan interest in the Fury-Chisora fight on December 3rd.
The southpaw Usyk actually does have a good shot at defeating Fury if he can take advantage of his lack of mobility and slow hand speed in comparison.
Up until a few years ago, Fury was a mobile heavyweight who danced around, flicking shots at his opponents. However, his American trainer Sugarhill Steward has changed Fury’s style, making him a stalker who leans on his opponents and clubs them with short punches on the inside.