Tyson Fury: ‘I’d like to fight the UFC heavyweight champion’

Tyson Fury is not one to mince words. Fresh off an upset win over dominant former champ Wladimir Klitschko, Fury appeared on the MMA…

By: Karim Zidan | 8 years ago
Tyson Fury: ‘I’d like to fight the UFC heavyweight champion’
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Tyson Fury is not one to mince words.

Fresh off an upset win over dominant former champ Wladimir Klitschko, Fury appeared on the MMA Hour, proclaimed himself the ‘best combat fighter on the planet’ and dismissed MMA as lesser than his own sport.

“I think MMA is for people who can’t box, basically.”

It is an opinion identical to the one he held several years ago when he challenged then UFC heavyweight champ Cain Velasquez to a fight, just slightly politer.

“Anything that’s stand-up, one-on-one combat, for me, I’m into,” Fury explained. “As soon as they start going up and down the floor and scoring points – not too sure how it works – but what I see, I’m not really too interested in. Sometimes they can stay on the floor quite a while before the referee says gets up before anything is going on. I just like to see the strikes getting blowed: punches, kicks, knees, whatever you like. All stand-up action.”

Yet despite his clear disdain for the intricacies of MMA, Fury revealed that he was in touch with Bellator MMA regarding a potential fight with the organization. He remains intrigued with the possibility of fighting a UFC heavyweight champion in the future, even if it isn’t Cain Velasquez.

“Me and Scott Coker’s had many conversations in the past about coming to Belltor and fight. I’m the heavyweight champion on the world in boxing and I’d like to unify and switch. I’d like to fight the UFC heavyweight champion. I’ve been calling Cain Velasquez out for two years and then he got beaten, so it showed you what I said was about right.”

However, Fury is not interested in an MMA fight. Aware of the fate that befell James Toney against Randy Coutureseveral years ago, Fury called for a ‘hybrid-rules’ contest that would allow for punches and kick. Grappling would not be allowed.

“I’m not really interested in a 100 percent MMA fight because obviously, they’re not going to stand up and bang with the heavyweight champion of the world, are they? They just want to take me to the floor.

“I just want to fight the best, the best stand-up fighter in the world. Whoever is the best stand-up fighter in the world, I want to fight him because I believe I’m that man,” he noted. “I don’t care if he wants to kick, whatever he wants to do. We can have an all-in fight because I believe I’m the best combat fighter on the planet.”

Transcription taken from MMAFighting.com.

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About the author
Karim Zidan
Karim Zidan

Karim Zidan is a investigative reporter and feature writer focusing on the intersection of sports and politics. He has written for BloodyElbow since 2014 and has served as an associate editor since 2016. He also writes for The New York Times and The Guardian. Karim has been invited to speak about his work at numerous universities, including Princeton, and was a panelist at the South by Southwest (SXSW) film festival and the Oslo Freedom Forum. He also participated in the United Nations counter-terrorism conference in 2021. His reporting on Ramzan Kadyrov’s involvement in MMA, much of which was done for Bloody Elbow, has led to numerous award nominations, and was the basis of an award-winning HBO Real Sports documentary.

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