By Terence Dooley
“You know what, I already know what you’re going to ask before you even ask it. I’m sick of all this talking. I just want to fight because that’s what I do.” Tyson Fury knows that talking to the press day in and day out leading up to his July 26th British and European title showdown with domestic rival and former foe Dereck Chisora is a necessary evil, but it gets tiresome for the 22-0 (16) contender.
Indeed, Fury put the topple into top table on Thursday when overturning a desk at a press conference in Manchester; the Manchester-based boxer has already had enough of the pre-fight chat, he just wants to fight. Still, he told BoxingScene that he is prepared to play the PR game until the first bell rings.
“I’m happy I’ve got another fight with Dereck Chisora, I can’t wait to get in there and knock him out,” he said. “Like you say, I’ve done a lot of talking already and it’s almost finally fight time.
“But I’m sick of the same bullsh*t questions about boxing and all the sh*t that comes with it. That’s why I put the table over the other day. It was going to be another hour of bullsh*t. I fight, I’m a fighting man and that’s what I do. I don’t want to answer a million questions about the same stuff all the time, so I got down to business.”
Fury is adamant that he will remain true to himself throughout the build-up to this and every other fight. The press will get what they want, but on his terms. The 25-year-old then summarised his position with a brief burst of lyricism.
“This is who I am,
a product of an Irish gyspy woman and man,
born and raised in a gypsy van,
don’t give a f*** about any man,
that’s what we are,” rapped the undefeated heavyweight.
“Listen, I’m outspoken and don’t give a sh*t, you either like it, don’t like it or can change the channel. To be honest, Dereck is what he is, he’s a tool in my opinion. The fella has done well for himself by earning some decent money. He’ll be earning more decent money when I give it to him on the 26th of July. He’s a glorified journeyman. I’ll smash him to pieces. I’m going to be heavyweight champion of the world and not just one, I’ll win all the belts and bring supremacy to the division for a long, long time.”
Fury, though, is also interested in amassing as much money as he can over the course of what is a relatively short career. The belts will bring him glory, the grandeur of big fights will follow from this—and you know what big fights bring: lots of attention, ticket sales, PPV and money.
“I’m not bothered, it’s all about money really so who gives a f*** about belts,” he said. “It’s money, money, money, sex and what else?—I don’t know. It’s not just about belts. Belts are the last things I give a f*** about. I’m a fighting man, we all need money to live, so I want to be involved in good fights and earn plenty of money.
“It’s going to be a great experience at the [Phones 4U] Arena [in Manchester]. I was meant to box there last year [against David Haye], but that didn’t happen. The local fans should be proud that the best heavyweight in the world is from Manchester. [Ricky] Hatton’s gone, now there’s only one and that’s Tyson Fury. It’s been a long time coming, but I’m here, baby—and I’m here to stay. Just keep your hair on and remember that I’m about town, I’m out and dangerous with two 12-bores in each fist.
“I am the main Manchester fighter now Hatton’s gone. It’s not about John Murray, Anthony Crolla or Terry Flanagan. All them lads are good fighters, but they’re not heavyweights and won’t become heavyweight champion of the world. Don’t get me wrong, I know them, they’re all good lads and nice kids.
“There’s only Tyson Fury now Hatton’s gone. I am the man of all boxing. No one can out-fight me or out-think me, I’m better looking, can walk, talk, sing, dance and fight. Anything you want to do I can do it. And I’m from Manchester.”
Fury believes in the power of the heavyweight division, he has consistently maintained that the true holder of the mythical pound-for-pound title should be able to defeat every other fighter in the world. The heavyweight champion is bigger than everyone else, so Fury believes that whoever holds the highest office in boxing is the best fighter in the world.
“I would knock Floyd [Mayweather] out in five seconds,” he declared. “Pound-for-pound, upside down, anything you want. I am the man, me—there’s not a 10 stone man born from his mother’s ____ who can beat me. I don’t give a f*** what other people say, the pound-for-pound king is always a heavyweight. Whoever is the best heavyweight on the planet is the best boxer in the world because size matters. I don’t care how skillful you are.
“When I beat Wladimir, I’ll be the best fighter on the planet. I’ll be the man who can beat anyone at all other weights. I thank God everyday for who I am—the person I’ve become—and that I’m a giant, a heavyweight who can fight—I wouldn’t want to be at any other weight. To be heavyweight champion means more than 10 other weights put together, you’d rather be heavyweight champion than a five-weight champion. Being heavyweight champ holds more glory.”
Although well aware of the rich history of the division, Fury lives in the here and now, telling me that the accumulated chronicle of our lives is washed clean when we ebb away and enter the ledgers of history for one last time. He may be remembered, but his goal is to enjoy the journey.
“Forget about that, I don’t give a f*** about that, either, because once you’re dead you’re dead,” he said when asked about the division’s potential to create greatness. “You go to heaven if you’re a good person, you go to hell if you’ve been a prick—that’s about it. I’m not interested in being remembered after I’m gone. I want to win fights and be celebrated now, not when I’m dead. I want people to feel pride now.
“Things go down in history, but who gives a sh*t about history? Nobody. Once it’s happened it is all history, isn’t it? Today will be history by tomorrow, won’t it? I’m all about what’s happening now. I’m about currency and today, not yesterday or tomorrow. You have to strike while the iron is hot, get what you can and while you can.
“I am going to be a superstar. I’ve said it for a long, long time. There’s been no one like me in heavyweight history. A big, giant white man of 6’ 9’’ who can box like a 14 stone black man, with skill, rhythm, energy, the gift of the gab, the lot. I’m the first one of a kind. There’s been Muhammad Ali, but he was 6’ 3’’ and 13 stone, so he’s not like me. I have the ability to turn, twist, move and out-work someone a lot, lot lighter—it’s never been known in history.
“The bigger they are the less work rate they have. You can’t compare me to a Klitschko because they’re big, stiff and don’t do anything to attract the fans. I’m a fan’s dream. I’m exciting, a heavyweight, I make headlines by saying the right thing at the right time and am the current man in boxing. I am what’s big at the moment, as they say.”
A conversation with Fury showcases the many different sides of his personality: fighter, talker, businessman and ticket seller. A few of his statements are followed by a chuckle, he knows what he is doing and, more importantly, that is working out for him. I concluded by asking which aspects of the Fury persona will be on display when he steps in against Chisora for the British and European titles.
“You’ll see all of them: the boxer, the fighter, the entertainer,” he promised. “I’m always an entertainer, in a fight or an interview, as you can probably tell, so I might get put down, put someone else down or shock someone in the meanwhile. It’s all very exciting.”
As for the infamous outbreaks of post-fight singing, he said: “The singing days are unfinished, my pal. Us travelers, we drink, we sing, have a few drinks more then sing until the early hours at a wedding. I get to do that live on national television, so why not? I don’t care if I can sing or I can’t, I just enjoy it anyway. We have a singsong, a bare knuckle fight or a dust-up then we sing some more old-fashioned songs together.”
In fact, he intends to bring the Fury fizz to the centre of Manchester following what he believes will be a victorious night against Chisora, 20-4 (13). The former British, Commonwealth and WBO Inter-Continental titlist implored the fans to join in the fun.
“I will be celebrating with the fans, and in a big way, because the champagne is on me the whole night for anyone who comes and joins me. This ain’t no after party ticket selling sh*t. Tyson Fury’s his own after party and it will be taking place in the town of Manchester after I’ve beat Chisora. The entire city’s my party.”
Then it was time for him to sign off. “I hope I’ve given you and the readers enough there, I try to make it colourful so it’s a good read,” said Fury, before telling me to tune into Mick Hennessy’s Channel 5-televised show in Sheffield later tonight. “I just might do something crazy,” he said with a laugh. And that was that.
Tickets are available now, priced from £50, through Eventim on 0844 249 1000 or www.eventim.co.uk. Fury v Chisora II will be shown live and exclusive on BoxNation (Sky Ch. 437/HD 490 and Virgin Ch. 546).
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