Former WBA heavyweight boxing champion Tyson Fury would have you know that, in his mind, he could beat the reigning heavyweight champion — Deontay Wilder — with a hand behind his back.
Clearly, even though Fury’s boxing career has been on hiatus for more than two years, his confidence hasn’t gone anywhere. That’s certainly noteworthy, considering the last two-and-a-half years of Fury’s professional boxing career has been tumultuous, to say the least.
Rewind the clock back to November of 2015, when fury fought Wladimir Klitschko for the WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO, Lineal and The Ring heavyweight titles. The undefeated Fury, with a 24-0 record, entered the match as an underdog to Klitschko, the latter of whom was sporting a 64-3 record entering the fight; Fury was a 4:1 underdog in many sports books. But Fury defeated Klitschko via unanimous decision in a stunning upset, ending Klitschko’s reign for almost a decade, which was the second-longest in heavyweight history.
But after the highest of highs came the lowest of lows. Klitschko was entitled to — and received — a rematch against Fury, the fight was postponed in two different instances, when Fury was first alleged to have been found with the “presence of a prohibited substance” from a previous drug test, and then later declared “medically unfit” for the subsequent date.
Amidst all the controversy he found himself embroiled within, Fury decided to vacate the titles he had won from Klitschko. While Fury tried his hardest to return to the ring, various boxing governance and anti-doping agencies presented numerous roadblocks to his return, requiring that he prove himself as being fully “clean.”
Eventually, through a series of legal technicalities and controversies the United Kingdom Anti-Doping agency themselves found themselves embroiled, Fury was able to re-apply for his boxing license in January of 2018.
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What makes Fury’s journey even more fascinating is some of which took place for him at a personal level, during his boxing hiatus. Specifically, Fury indicated he battled mental health issues throughout his time away from the ring, which some of the erratic behaviors he publicly demonstrated during that time would support. Fury also reportedly put on over 100lbs of fat, which is a near-unfathomable number for a professional athlete, especially one with homes to resume a career in one of the most physically demanding sports in the world.
But all of that is behind him now; even the 100lbs of fat are all gone. Fury’s “comeback” fight was recently announced, with him being set to take on Sefer Seferi, 39-year old boxer from Albania with a 23-1 record (including 21 KO’s). The fight against Seferi will be one of three that Fury plans to take part in over the next year, but the bigger story will of course be around how he fares in his return after such a long hiatus.