The Hack: Heavyweights don’t inspire hope

The king is dead, long live the king!

But please, spare us from any talk that the new king of the heavyweights, Tyson Fury, is some sort of saviour for one of the worst divisions in boxing.

I saw better fighting during the premiere of ‘Creed’ the boxing flick that forms part of the famed ‘Rocky’ series.

Those keen followers of the sport were left in a state of shock last weekend as the British fighter managed to end the dominant reign of Wladimir Klitschko and wrest the IBF, IBO, WBO and WBA belts.

The only belt missing from the new collection is the WBC strap held by Deontay Wilder.

But as impressive as Fury’s achievement sounds, and it will no doubt go down as one of the biggest nights in the history of British boxing, the actual fight wasn’t exactly worthy of the status bestowed upon it.

Dull, dreary and downright disappointing is what it was. It’s a sad reality these days.

The heavyweights of today aren’t worthy of lacing the gloves of the likes of Muhammad Ali, George Foreman, Lennox Lewis and Mike Tyson.

You’d think that with those names the division would have evolved but it’s been the opposite.

The heavyweights of today are no great shakes, their conditioning is nowhere near that of the fighters of yesteryear.

On the plus side, what Fury’s victory has done is to break the dominance of the Klitschko brothers. There’s been talk this week of the rematch. If you’re struggling to sleep that night just put the fight on, you’ll be sure to sleep like a baby.

What the fight also served to prove was that fighters have a tendency to age overnight. Time has a funny way of sneaking up pugilists. It’s something you can’t really prepare for and when it happens there’s not much you can do about it.

Klitschko had no answers, his robotic style found out against a guy who managed to gee himself up enough to pull off one of the great capers by dethroning the champ when the odds were stacked firmly against him.

Good luck to the guy.

Fury’s character is such that he’s more likely to take on the role of the court jester – as you’d expect from a guy who arrives to a  press conference in a Batman suit – rather than the man who is going to rule the division with an iron fist.

Give me the speed and guile of the pugilists in the smaller divisions any day. I’d rather watch paint dry than devote time to a heavyweight scrap.

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