Alexander Krassyuk, promoter of IBF, IBO, WBA, WBO heavyweight champion Oleksandr Usyk, says his boxer is not fixated on how WBC champion Tyson Fury performed in the recent fight with MMA veteran Francis Ngannou.
In a non-title crossover boxing match, Fury had his share of struggles with Ngannou, who was making his professional debut. Fury was dropped in the third round, cut on his forehead, and sustained a badly bruised eye.
On February 17 in Saudi Arabia, Fury will collide in the ring with Usyk to crown an undisputed world champion.
"Let me say, the Francis Ngannou fight didn’t change Usyk's mindset. He’s a very reasonable and wise man and understands that sometimes, sh!tty days happen and that was a completely sh!tty day for Tyson. There can be different reasons for it but that was one of the worst performances we have ever seen by Tyson Fury. But it doesn’t mean on February 17 we will see the Tyson Fury that fought Francis Ngannou," Krassyuk told Betway.
"As a team, we discussed this issue and believe this will be the biggest and toughest fight of Tyson Fury’s career. He knows how hard he has to train and work to step into the ring with unified heavyweight and former undisputed cruiserweight champion. Tyson is the man and the thing that happened to him against Ngannou, he underestimated him and didn’t think he was a boxing man but Usyk is a boxing man and he will treat him with all of the seriousness he should give him.
"There is a size difference, a weight difference, boxing experience, boxing IQ, footwork and a difference in amateur experience. If you put all the factors on the table, there is no 100% answer – the answer will be found within the 12 rounds, and this is the fight for the undisputed heavyweight championship, and you can’t guarantee who is the winner but I am confident because I know how much work Usyk does in a training camp and how many challenges he overcomes.
"I can’t argue with Tyson that it is up to God who the winner is but Usyk is made different and is the former undisputed cruiserweight champion and unified heavyweight champion but is so humble with it. But I know Tyson can overcome his arrogance and become a student in the training camp and it is something we want. We want this fight to be a horrendous fight, a hard fight and to overcome a Tyson Fury at his best because the value of the victory becomes so high."
There is a two-way rematch clause in involved in the fight.
Due to the amount of money involved, most observers are expecting a second fight regardless of the outcome in the first.
"Yes, we have discussed that in any case, when you have a blockbuster fight you have to see the sequel. We are dealing with Tyson Fury and sometimes a bad day comes, even two times in a row, and a man who can complain about. But Oleksandr will happily give him a rematch," Krassyuk said.