With a third fight scheduled against Deontay Wilder on Saturday night, Tyson Fury isn’t losing any sleep over allegations made by his upcoming opponent.
In the days leading up to their trilogy bout, Wilder has made unfounded claims that Fury cheated in the previous meeting in February 2020 by using “loaded gloves,” which helped him earn a seventh-round TKO.
While Wilder stayed very quiet after the bout against Fury was first booked, he’s gotten a lot more vocal lately and claimed that he expects “The Gypsy King” to come up with some sort of “master plan” in order to cheat again.
For his part, Fury could only laugh off the accusations while playing into Wilder’s paranoia about the way the last fight ended.
“You know what? I’m going to cheat again because I’m going to smash his face in,” Fury said Monday on The MMA Hour. “According to him, that’s cheating because he’s not supposed to lose. Unfortunately, I’m going to cheat again. I’m going to kick his ass, sea bass.
“I had horseshoes in there. You know I’m a gypsy don’t you? You ever watch ‘Peaky Blinders’? I loaded the gloves with horseshoes and dynamite. This time I’m going to do exactly the same. Put a bit more metal in there.”
Prior to his most recent interviews, Wilder barely addressed Fury after losing to him last year, yet he definitely reacted to the result by firing his head coach Mark Breland after Breland threw in the towel to stop the second fight. Wilder then started working with a new trainer in order to prepare for the third showdown against Fury.
Now Wilder is suddenly tossing out accusations about cheating, but Fury believes that has a lot more to do with his opponent living in denial after he was so thoroughly dominated the last time out.
“It does say a lot,” Fury explained. “We’ve boxed 19 rounds and he’s practically won two rounds out of 19. I’m not really too bothered about it but you’ve got to respect everyone that gets in the ring with a pair of boxing gloves on or any fight, whether it’s MMA, kickboxing, Muay Thai, boxing whatever — every man’s trained and coming to win.
“With Wilder, in my opinion, he’s come out with all this stuff — I’ve cheated, I’ve done this, I’m a natural born cheater, his coach. I must have some power, mustn’t I? Because I’ve even got his coach on my side. Not to mention Jay Diaz, he’s on my payroll, too. I’m like Tommy Shelby here, I’ve got them all on the payroll. He’s on the payroll too, Jay Diaz, because he was in the changing room while I was getting my gloves on the whole time. So he must have helped me and Wilder’s in denial about that.
“But let me just put that out there as well. You’ve got all this stuff. Whether he believes it or not is another thing. But he has to try and sell the fight somehow. He has to try and make a reason why he could win. So he clearly couldn’t do the reasons why in a boxing fight so he has to make other reasons for his own self, for the people around him who are saying he can do this, he can do that.”
By blaming his trainer for throwing in the towel and now claiming that cheating cost him the fight, Fury feels like Wilder is just telling himself whatever he needs to here in order to try and turn things around for this third matchup.
Of course, Fury doesn’t expect any of it will work, but he can’t help but see through what Wilder is attempting to do right now.
“If he went into this fight saying, ‘You know what? I got absolutely annihilated the second time, it’s probably going to happen to me again,’ then his mental attitude would definitely be of a loss straight away,” Fury said. “But if he’s convinced himself that there’s been some skullduggery going on, maybe he thinks in his own mind he has got a better chance or something.”
In reality, Fury knows that Wilder just isn’t willing to accept defeat, much less that he was beaten by the better man when they clashed last year. As a person who’s struggled with acceptance in his own life, Fury can almost sympathize with Wilder. But none of those excuses will fly once they step in the ring together.
“Acceptance is a hard thing because nobody wants to accept the truth,” Fury said. “When I was an alcoholic, I didn’t want to be told I was an alcoholic. I didn’t want to be told I’m a fat bastard. I was just happy being that. It’s almost like this little game in your own head where you don’t want to know the truth even though you do know the truth. I always knew I was a fat bastard. I knew I was addicted to alcohol but I didn’t want it pushed in my face.
“The moment that I accepted that I had to change and I had to get help and stop what I was doing, that’s the moment I could step away from it all and start again. From what I’m hearing from this idiot here, he hasn’t accepted what’s happened to him. Therefore, without accepting defeat, you can never regain. You can never go on from that. ‘Cause you’re still dwelling on the past.”
It might not benefit him to say it but Fury actually offered Wilder some advice that he hopes might help him before they start throwing punches at each other again on Saturday night.
“You’ve got to let go of all this stuff — animosity, whatever’s happened to you in your life,” Fury said. “Whatever you think you can’t let go of, you can let go of it, because I’ve let go before plenty of times. You feel so much better for letting go and moving on than you ever would holding a grudge forever.
“So there’s my advice. If he’s listening or some of his team is listening — acceptance first, acknowledgment, and then you can move on.”
Regardless of what’s driving Wilder, including the changes that were made in his training camp, Fury doesn’t expect any of it will help.
Fury fully intends on silencing Wilder once and for all in the trilogy and leaving the ring as the best heavyweight in the sport of boxing.
“I’m motivated to fight anybody they put in front of me,” Fury said. “Whether I’ve beat the guy 10 times or not, I’ll always be motivated because it’s a fight. It’s what I do.
“I’m expecting an improvement [from Wilder]. If he hasn’t improved, then it should be a really easy night because I know that I’ve improved.”