Fury vs. Usyk preview by Evander Holyfield: Big heavyweights “crumble” when hit

By Boxing News - 12/29/2022 - Comments

By Charles Brun: Evander Holyfield says big heavyweights like Tyson Fury “crumble” when they’re hit a lot by smaller, faster heavyweights that put hands on them.

Holyfield noticed that when he moved up in weight from cruiserweight in 1988 that the big heavyweights didn’t like getting hit, and they had low punch outputs.

As Holyfield says, former unified cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Usyk has an advantage over the big 6’9″ Fury (33-0-1, 24 KOs) because of his faster hands and ability to throw combinations.

Fury doesn’t throw combinations, especially at this late stage in his career. He throws single punches and immediately grabs his opponents to rest & lean on them.

With the referees allowing Fury to repeatedly clinch and lean on his opponents, he’s able to game the system by bending the rules to his advantage.

Without the punch & grab technique that Fury has to rely on as he’s rapidly aged in an accelerated fashion in recent years, he’d likely have been beaten by Deontay Wilder and Otto Wallin in recent years.

Those are the only good fighters that Fury has fought since his bout against the washed-up 39-year-old Wladimir Klitschko.

Assuming the Fury vs. Usyk bout is staged in the UK next March, it’s fair to say that we’ll see a lot of nonstop clinching & leaning by Tyson without him being warned, penalized, or disqualified for bending the rules.

It’ll be interesting to see what Usyk’s trainer has for him to counteract the clinching & leaning by Fury.

If the big 6’9″ Gypsy King is going to break the rules and game the system to his advantage, should Usyk get in the mud with him and cheat as well?

If so, would Usyk get away with rule-breaking like Fury routinely has with his excessive clinching & rabbit punching? It would be sad if Usyk is penalized for breaking the rules while Fury gets away with it.

Ideally, the Fury vs. Usyk fight should take place in a neutral venue outside of the UK with a referee and a set of judges that come from other countries around the world.

“I remember being overseas, and Usyk said, ‘I’m going to do the same thing that you did,’ and he almost done it. If he fought Tyson Fury, he would,” said Evander Holyfield to iFL TV when asked to analyze a fight between WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury and IBF, WBA & WBO champ Oleksandr Usyk.

“When I look at the fight, both off the guys are good fighters but the smaller guy [Usyk] has faster hands.

YouTube video

“If the big guy [Fury] don’t make the smaller guy fight like him, he’s going to win because that’s the reason I went up [to heavyweight]. I realized I was quicker than everybody.

“It makes a lot because the facts of the matter is the big difference is this. Back in my day if a guy was too big, they called him ‘Goofy,’ and the guy didn’t even perform well.

“Now these big guys have got the rhythm, they got the balance, and they got everything that a smaller guy has so it’s difficult. It has grown difficult because these guys start at a young age.

“You know like early learning, sports is pretty much the same thing.  If you start at an early age, you can be so much better if you’re bigger. It’s pretty much how Tyson Fury fight,” said Holyfield when asked how a fight between Fury and Usyk would play out.

“If the guy has fast hands and good combinations, it’s hard to stop a big guy. That’s the why I moved up to heavyweight. I would have an advantage over the guys that were tall and bigger because they throw one or two punches and they don’t like to get hit.

“So they get hit and all of a sudden, they crumble,” Holyfield said about the bigger heavyweights like Fury.