By Keith Idec
LAS VEGAS – Tyson Fury was in much better shape Friday than when he launched his comeback a little over a year ago.
The 6-feet-9 Fury weighed 263 pounds when he stepped on the Nevada State Athletic Commission’s scale at MGM Grand Garden Arena. Fury was 13 pounds lighter for his fight Saturday night against Tom Schwarz than he was for his stoppage of overmatched Sefer Seferi last June 9 in Manchester, England.
The 30-year-old Fury came in 6½ pounds heavier, however, than the 256½ pounds he weighed when he survived two knockdowns and battled to a 12-round draw with WBC champion Deontay Wilder on December 1 at Staples Center in Los Angeles. Fury dismissed the idea that his higher weight had anything to do with taking the unproven Schwarz lightly.
“That’s the number I chose,” Fury told ESPN’s Bernardo Osuna once he stepped off the scale. “Bigger is beautiful.”
Germany’s Schwarz weighed in at 235 pounds for a 12-round main event ESPN+ will stream from MGM Grand Garden Arena. Perhaps channeling his inner Andy Ruiz Jr., the 6-feet-5 Schwarz chewed on a Snickers bar as he and Fury stood face to face on the stage.
The undefeated Fury (27-0-1, 19 KOs), touted as the lineal heavyweight champion, is regularly listed as a 25-1 favorite over the unbeaten but unknown Schwarz (24-0, 16 KOs).
Before Fury and the 25-year-old Schwarz weighed in, light heavyweights Jesse Hart and Sullivan Barrera made weight for their 10-round, 175-pound bout Saturday night.
Philadelphia’s Hart (25-2, 21 KOs), a 2-1 favorite who has moved up from the super middleweight division, officially weighed 174 pounds. Miami’s Barrera (22-2, 14 KOs) came in at 173½ pounds.
The ESPN+ stream is scheduled to begin at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT with live coverage of the Hart-Barrera bout.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.