How Would Fury Deal with Iron Mike?

November 15, 2023
3 months

Tyson Fury is undoubtedly one of the elite heavyweights of his generation and multiple eras, past and present. He knocked off Wladimir Klitschko, Deontay Wilder, and Dillian Whyte, amongst others – and is set for a ground-breaking cross-over fight against Francis Ngannou. Tyson was named just that after Mike Tyson because he was a fighter from birth, having been born prematurely and surviving, unlike his father’s prior children, who had died during childbirth. But how would Fury get on in the ring with his namesake?

Fury’s Skills to Victory

Tyson Fury has made a living out of head games coupled with astute boxing prowess. He’s got everything to defeat his opponent in and outside of the ring. Some would consider him to be the complete modern boxer. He’s shown the ability to outbox opponents and win on decisions while also finishing fights, having won five of his last six fights by stoppage. His frame, reach, and size give him a distinct advantage in keeping opponents away from him while still being able to strike them. Given the ferocity of how Mike Tyson could punch, Fury would most likely go for the latter game plan.

Would Fury Even Take a Fight Like This?

While Tyson Fury has a good resume, it’s potentially not as good as it could be. Excluding the trilogy series against Deontay Wilder, he’s beaten Dillian Whyte and 38-year-old Derek Chisora, who was 33-12 before the fight. It pains Fury fans to try to defend the lack of top-tier names on his record. While a provisional fight with Oleksandr Usyk is penned in, it’s not fully confirmed. The negotiations were lengthy and seemingly stop-start, with Fury’s camp reportedly stalling. He also seems completely uninterested in making the long-awaited Battle of Britain with Anthony Joshua, as talks of the fight never took off the ground despite major public interest. As he’s never taken on such a caliber of opponent, if Mike Tyson was from the same era, it would seem unlikely that Tyson Fury would be eager to get into the ring with him. After all, he’s fighting Francis Ngannou, who isn’t a boxer.

Tyson’s last pro fight took place in 2005, while Fury debuted in 2007. Could it have happened? Unlikely. But imagine the scalp it would have been if their paths crossed on one side of the Atlantic in the late 2000s should Fury have won. Or if Iron Mike got his groove and notched up a win after that defeat to Kevin McBride. The Fury legacy might never have happened, and Tyson could have continued to fight into his 40s.

The Build-Up Would Be a Must-See

Both Tyson Fury and Mike Tyson are celebrated as some of the sport’s biggest characters. Tyson Fury famously attended the press conference for his fight with Wladimir Klitschko dressed as Batman. While his antics have since become a little less zany, he’s still very outspoken and ensures he lets the public know that he is the superior fighter before any bout takes place.

However, it’s not like Mike Tyson would take any verbal jabs lying down. During the height of his career, he was known to trash-talk opponents with very colorful language and make controversial claims in the lead-up to the fight. That’s, of course, not even mentioning the time that there was a full-scale brawl at the press conference for his match with Lennox Lewis, where the Baddest Man on the Planet started biting Lewis. Any media appearances attended by both men for this hypothetical fight would most certainly need a heightened security budget for sure.

How Would the Matchup Play Out?

This heavyweight contest would be a true spectacle and would force Tyson Fury to a new dimension in his fight game. He’s arguably never fought someone with the same venomous power and stamina to keep throwing knockout blows. Deontay Wilder has power, but arguably not at the same level as Iron Mike. Fury would have to recraft his defensive skills to new echelons to ensure that he wasn’t hit by a trademark Mike Tyson punch.

Fury does have a remarkable chin and the ability to get up from what would be normal match-ending strikes. He’s seen to get up supernaturally after receiving stern blows (much like he did against the Bronze Bomber) he could probably take at least one or maybe two of Iron Mike’s solid punches before he’d be down and out. He would still need to keep Mike at bay and seize his opportunities while still trying to outbox him on the scorecards.

With a knockout-to-win percentage of 88%, nobody would tell Mike Tyson that he couldn’t knock out Tyson Fury. He’d go in with the same plan to win by ending the fight as soon as he could. Even if Fury has a size and reach advantage, Iron Mike would find a way to win. Naysayers only need to study the tape from November 1986 when Mike defeated Trevor Berbick. His Jamaican adversary was significantly bigger than him in height and reach. Tyson knocked him out in the second round to go 28-0 and win the WBC heavyweight title, starting a reign that would last over three years.

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