By Keith Idec
Otto Wallin won’t go out like Tom Schwarz.
The undefeated Swedish southpaw promises to be a much more difficult foe for Tyson Fury than Schwarz was in Fury’s last bout. Wallin (20-0, 13 KOs, 1 NC) is set to face Fury (28-0-1, 20 KOs) in a 12-rounder ESPN+ will stream September 14 from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
Wallin was perplexed while watching Tyson Fury’s second-round technical knockout of Schwarz on June 15 in Las Vegas. Wallin wondered about Schwarz’s game plan and feels the previously unbeaten German heavyweight could’ve given a better effort in what was the biggest fight of Schwarz’s career.
“I felt that Schwarz, he could’ve had a better game plan,” Wallin told BoxingScene.com. “And I felt that he kind of gave up in the second round. I know that he was hit with some good shots, but it looked to me like he kind of gave up after missing a few punches and all that.”
The 6-feet-5, 235-pound Schwarz fired several hard right hands at Fury during the first round of their fight at MGM Grand Garden Arena. Fury opened the second round fighting out of a southpaw stance, and quickly picked apart Schwarz.
The 6-feet-9, 263-pound Fury caught Schwarz with two eye-catching left uppercuts and later a right hand that dropped Schwarz late in the second round. Schwarz got up, but Fury pounced on him and unloaded a barrage of unanswered power punches that forced referee Kenny Bayless to stop their scheduled 12-rounder less than two rounds into it.
The 30-year-old Fury went off as a 12-1 favorite over Schwarz (24-1, 16 KOs). He has opened as an even bigger favorite versus the untested, unknown Wallin (25-1), but the confident Wallin is certain he will fare much better against the lineal heavyweight champion.
“I think what separates me from the others is that I have good speed and I have good footwork, and I’m a young, hungry guy,” said Wallin, who’s 28. “And I have everything to gain and nothing to lose. So, he’s gonna know that he’s in with someone that wants to win.”
Nevertheless, the 6-feet-5, 230-pound Wallin understands the backlash Fury and co-promoters Bob Arum and Frank Warren have received since he was confirmed as Fury’s upcoming opponent.
“[Fans] don’t know me, so I was expecting that, with them being negative about it,” Wallin said. “But I get a lot of support. A lot of people that know me, they get a hold of me and say I can do this. I’m very happy for that. I love the support, and the other guys, I don’t care so much about.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.