LAS VEGAS – Tyson Fury figures he won’t have to fight Dillian Whyte after he defeats Deontay Wilder again Saturday night.
Whyte is the WBC interim heavyweight champion and apparently the mandatory challenger for Fury’s title. Fury thinks Whyte and his handlers have made a matchmaking mistake, though, for the London-based contender’s upcoming fight.
Fury knows Otto Wallin as well as anyone due to their 12-round fight two years ago at T-Mobile Arena, the same venue where Fury will fight Wilder for the third time. Based on his detailed knowledge of Wallin, the unbeaten Brit expects the Swedish southpaw to beat Whyte in a 12-round encounter DAZN will stream worldwide October 30 from O2 Arena in London.
“I think that’s a real 50-50 fight, to be honest,” Fury said. “But I slightly favor Wallin to beat Whyte, just because he’s a decent boxer and he’s a southpaw and he’s tough. Because I unloaded on him every round in our fight. The only thing he did to me was give me a cut in whatever round it was, a couple of cuts. But apart from that, he lost every round. So, he’s a tough guy – that’s for sure. And I think he did just give Dominic Breazeale a boxing lesson. So, I think he does exactly the same to Dillian Whyte, to be fair. The heavyweight landscape is changing.”
Wallin (22-1, 14 KOs, 1 NC) beat Breazeale (20-3, 18 KOs) convincingly in his most recent action, a 12-round fight February 20 at Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut. His only loss was a 12-round, unanimous-decision defeat to Fury two years ago.
Whyte regained his WBC interim crown in his last fight, which resulted in a fourth-round technical knockout of Alexander Povetkin in their immediate rematch March 27 at Europa Point Sports Complex in Gibraltar. In their previous fight, Russia’s Povetkin (36-3-1, 25 KOs) upset the Jamaican-born Whyte (28-2, 19 KOs) by fifth-round knockout.
Povetkin overcame two fourth-round knockdowns to knock Whyte unconscious with a left hook in the fifth round of that August 2020 bout at Matchroom Boxing’s headquarters in Brentwood, England.
Fury still considers Wallin a curious choice for Whyte’s next fight.
“In their mind, it was the easiest fight available for someone who’s comparisons level,” Fury explained. “Because they think, ‘If we knock out Wallin, it looks better for us because Tyson didn’t,’ and it makes our fight better. But if he’d have just knocked out anybody, then it really wouldn’t have done much for him. But they picked a tough fight. And as Matchroom have been noted for in boxing, a lot of the times it’s they don’t know what they’re doing, so they pick these really tough opponents for him because they’re smaller or they’re not as good as a boxer on paper. And then it comes up sticky.
“Just like they picked the little fat kid, Andy Ruiz. Two weeks’ notice – chinned his golden goose [Anthony Joshua]. And every other guy they’ve ever fought as well. They pick [Oleksandr] Usyk. ‘Fight Usyk because he’s only a cruiserweight! He’s only small. Joshua’s a behemoth. Let’s pick Usyk.’ And they just pick the wrong people because you’ve gotta really understand boxing to be able to deal with these guys. And if you know the backgrounds of ‘em, then you know they’re dangerous.”
That said, Fury (30-0-1, 21 KOs) is fully focused on his own showdown with Wilder (42-1-1, 41 KOs). The Manchester native is consistently listed as a 3-1 favorite to defeat Wilder again in this ESPN/FOX Sports Pay-Per-View main event (9 p.m. EDT; $79.99).
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.