Normally when there is a trilogy of fights between two fighters, the third bout is usually the deciding encounter between the two, usually with each fighter having won one fight each in a conventional scenario. There are times however, when a trilogy comes about not to determine who is the better fighter, but because one fighter is able to secure an opportunity. In the case of the rivalry between undefeated two-time Heavyweight world champion Tyson Fury and longtime contender and former world title challenger Dereck Chisora, their third bout comes more than eight years after their second bout with Fury having won both of those fights.
Obviously, a lot can happen in eight years time and these two are different fighters than the ones that first met in July 2011 for the British and Commonwealth Heavyweight championships. Although Chisora was stopped in their second bout in November 2014 and is many years removed from his one previous attempt at a world championship when he lost a decision to Vitali Klitschko for the WBC world championship that Fury now holds, he has seen a recent career resurgence following some hard luck decisions that have gone against him. In his last bout, Chisora scored a hard fought twelve round split decision over former world title challenger Kubrat Pulev in July of this year, the second of the two encounters between the two.
After forty-five bouts in a career that began fifteen years ago in 2007, Chisora has admitted that he does not have too many fights left in him. Despite losing two fights to Tyson Fury, the stakes are obviously higher this time around with a world championship on the line. Fury meanwhile, has spent the last several months retiring and unretiring from the sport seemingly in an attempt to goad the media as well as former two-time Heavyweight world champion Anthony Joshua, who has been a potential opponent for him for the last several years. In his last fight, Fury successfully made the second defense of his WBC championship by scoring a sixth round knockout of longtime mandatory challenger Dillian Whyte in Wembley Stadium.
Although Fury has managed to stay unbeaten in the years since he last fought Chisora, he has also like his next challenger gone through ups and downs both in and out of the ring. Many will recall the punishment Fury sustained in two of his three bouts with Deontay Wilder, the man who Fury won two bouts via knockout to win the WBC championship and successfully defend it against in one of the sport’s most memorable trilogies in the recent history of Boxing. While Fury did not show any signs of decline in his most recent title defense against Whyte, it should be obvious to any level-headed observer that fighters have two things that they combat over the course of their careers that ultimately take a toll on them. One is the natural passage of time, after all, we are all human and fighters like the rest of us do age with time. The second thing a fighter combats over the course of that time in terms of both preparing for competition and during the actual fights themselves is the accumulative effect of all the punishment both in training and in competition that ultimately leads to a fighter’s decline.
For Fury, the question going into this fight is simple. After thirty-three pro bouts in a career that began in 2009 as well as his struggles with mental health outside the ring, and the wars he has been in inside the ring, at thirty four years of age, it is fair to ask whether his heart is truly in it now after retiring once and relinquishing what was a unified crown several years ago to address his mental health, as well as his recent retirements and unretirements, which may or may not be a case of an athlete having a bit of fun at the expense of both media and fans. It is also fair to question how prepared he is to face Dereck Chisora a third time after failed negotiations for a fight with Joshua on relatively short notice failed to materialize and Fury’s potential unification bout with undefeated unified WBA/IBF/IBO/WBO Heavyweight world champion Oleksandr Usyk, which is said to be aimed for sometime in 2023.
While it is understandable on one hand given the ups and downs Chisora has gone through in the ring, which tends to be the case for many fighters over a long career as well as his previous two losses to Fury how he is viewed as an underdog going into this fight, Chisora is literally in a position where he has nothing to lose and everything to gain. If this is indeed a scenario where the champion having won two previous fights against him is looking ahead to a more lucrative fight, if Chisora is ready for this fight, there may be a surprise.
How can Chisora pull off a significant upset at a latter point in his career? Having covered the previous two fights there is only one way I can see Chisora having success. He must bring the fight to Fury from the outset and stay on him for however long the bout lasts. There are two important things to consider in this fight, both of which, led to defeat for Chisora in the previous two bouts against the champion. One, Fury is 6’9 and in recent fights has scaled to nearly 280lbs. Despite his height and weight, Fury is also one of the more elusive Heavyweights currently in the sport and has proven to be both difficult to hit and also shown an ability to quickly recover when he has been caught and knocked down most notably in the first and third bouts against Deontay Wilder. Chisora must find a way to get inside Fury’s eighty-five inch reach and do so consistently if he wants to be successful. If the natural advantages Fury has over the 6’1 ½ Chisora are not frustrating enough to combat, Fury is also skilled in the mental aspects of the sport and has shown the ability to goad his opponents into making mistakes during bouts, this was noticeable in the first encounter between these two fighters in particular. Chisora must keep his mind on the task at hand even if he is able to have success in this fight, he must be tactical and not allow Fury to try and bait him into making mistakes.
While on the surface this fight has an appearance of another title defense for an undefeated world champion against a longtime contender who after a decade of waiting is getting his second opportunity at a world championship at a stage in his career where he might be nearing retirement, both Tyson Fury and Dereck Chisora have sizable fan followings and no matter how the odds may appear, a sizable crowd is expected in Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London, England to see the two men renew their rivalry, this time with the WBC’s version of the World Heavyweight championship on the line.
“And That’s The Boxing Truth.”
Fury vs. Chisora 3 takes place on Saturday, December 3rd at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London, England. The fight as well as it’s full undercard can be seen in the United States on digital subscription sports streaming network ESPN+ beginning at 1PM ET/10AM PT (U.S. Time). ESPN+ is available through the ESPN app on mobile, tablet, and connected streaming devices/Smart TVs. For more information about ESPN+ including schedules, list of compatible streaming devices, platforms, Smart TVs, and to subscribe please visit: www.ESPNPlus.com. *Check your local listings internationally.
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