The undisputed heavyweight championship of the world takes place on February 17th, 2024, with both fighters coming off tricky wins. Usyk had to get off the canvas in round five against Daniel Dubois when the latter connected with a body shot, which was then deemed a low blow, allowing Usyk over three minutes to recover. Despite the Ukrainian stopping the Brit in round nine, the legality of the punch divided the boxing community, with Frank Warren believing Dubois had been deprived of a win.
As for Fury, the Gypsy King’s split-decision win over Ngannou was also disputed. The WBC champion was sent to the canvas in round three, as Ngannou connected with a left hook, in a performance where he lasted the distance on his boxing debut. Although Fury maintained that he trained adequately for the fight, there were suggestions that he may have overlooked Ngannou. Either way, Usyk was ready for what could be the toughest fight of his career.
“I know Tyson can overcome his arrogance and become a student in the training camp and it is something we want. We want this fight to be a horrendous fight, a hard fight and to overcome a Tyson Fury at his best because the value of the victory becomes so high,” Krassyuk said
The winner would be obliged to face Filip Hrgovic, who is the IBF mandatory waiting in the wings. The failure to do so would result in the winner being stripped. That is vital since the bout does include a two-way rematch clause. So, in reality, there could be one chance to become undisputed unless both were willing to wait for the rematch after the mandatory. Regardless, Usyk was prepared to run things back.
“We are dealing with Tyson Fury and sometimes a bad day comes, even two times in a row, and a man who can complain about. But Oleksandr will happily give him a rematch,” Krassyuk stated
Outside of Fury, Krassyuk earmarked Deontay Wilder as a future opponent for Usyk. A fight against Wilder could potentially add to Usyk’s legacy, given the American’s ability to stop his opponent at any given time. The Bronze Bomber is the only other big name that would be missing from Usyk’s resume after the Fury fight. Meanwhile, Wilder had previously accused Usyk’s team of ducking him, something which they have yet to address.
“He’s dodged me so many times and I know. And don’t act like I don’t know, I don’t want anyone to come out like, ‘Usyk said this and that.’ It would be a lie because I know a lot of s**t. I’m in the business, I know. He’s been offered a lot of money to fight me, many times. But he’s denied it. They said they do not want Bomb Squad problems,” Wilder said
However, this may depend on the Fury result. A win over the Gypsy King could result in Usyk walking away from the sport. And at the age of 36, the main goal will be undisputed. Outside of that, Wilder could be an option if it makes sense for both fighters.
“I can tell you Deontay Wilder is in the top 3 heavyweights in the world and of course, a fight with him is something worth doing and worth seeing for me, as a boxing fan. It would be a great fight for sure so let’s see. But from the point of view of Usyk’s career, it depends on how the fight with Tyson goes,” Krassyuk said