By Jake Donovan
Heavyweight newcomer Hughie Fury will be making his pro debut a month earlier than expected.
The 18-year old, whose cousin is unbeaten heavyweight contender Tyson Fury, will turn pro Friday evening at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Canada. His preliminary bout with David Whittom will air live on Wealth TV.
“I prefer that I’m fighting sooner, because now I can get warmed up and perform better,” said Fury in a statement. The latter part is in reference to his still-planned appearance on the undercard of his cousin’s NBC-televised showdown with Steve Cunningham, April 20 in New York City.
“I can have my first pro fight, get used to the crowd , the atmosphere and the big arena. I’m hoping to get all the pro debut nerves out of the way, I want to show my boxing skill and show everybody what I’m made of, with a good performance. I can’t wait. This is the first one, I can use it to settle in and get used to the pro game and then hopefully step it up at Madison Square Garden.”
Headlining the card will be current top-ranked super middleweight contender Adonis Stevenson. Biding his time while awaiting a mandatory title shot, Stevenson (19-1, 16KO) looks to avenge his lone career defeat with Friday’s rematch against Darnell Boone.
Live coverage of the card starts at 7PM Eastern Time. The fight can also be seen on WealthTV.com (excluding Canada) by signing up for an account.
"We are excited Hughie Fury is on the card and that his fans from home will be able to see him,” Tommy Morris, Director of Live Events for Wealth TV said. “We have had Tyson Fury on our network in the past and we know Hughie will be just as exciting to watch.”
Awaiting the 6’8” Fury on the undercard is the 34-year old Whittom (11-19, 7KO), a local journeyman familiar in his role as heavyweight steppingstone.
“I don’t underestimate any fighter, so at the moment I’ve got to get David Whittom out of the way, he’s my main priority and after that we move on,” Fury said. “I’m expecting a good few rounds and the experience of pro fighting.”
The location is ideal for Fury, as he and cousin Tyson have set up training camp at Casino Lac-Leamy, Gatineau, Quebec, Canada.
“Training has been going well, sparring nearly every day, everything has been going good,” Fury said. “We settled in over here perfect, everything has been going good, been training with my Dad and Tyson - I’ve got used to the time difference, so I’m all ready to go.”
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com, as well as a member of Transnational Boxing Ratings Board, Yahoo Boxing Ratings Panel and the Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox