Athletic Commission Bans Wilder-Fury II Weigh-In Faceoff
Those expecting some added drama between Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury tomorrow will be a little disappointed. According to ESPN’s Dan Rafael, the Nevada State Athletic Commission has banned a traditional faceoff between Wilder and Fury during the ceremonial weigh-ins.
“The reason the decision was made, on behalf of the commission, is because the press conference [on Wednesday] spoke for itself,” NSAC executive director Bob Bennett stated to ESPN.
Yesterday, tensions rose when Wilder and Fury used a mic to speak their mind. Dancing at first, the two got into a shoving bout as soon as they got as close as humanly possible. They were ready to go at it right then and there. Of course, that may have just been a ploy to get people interested in the fight.
“The actions of the two fighters pushing each other, which was not staged, is not indicative of the image of our sport as a major league sport, thus having a faceoff is not in the best interest in the health and safety of the fighters, the public and the event,” Bennett went on to say.
Horseplay prior to a boxing event has been around for a while. The idea, however, of two fighters competing in a bout worth millions getting hurt or suspended prior to the actual fight did not sound very enticing. This is especially true since the UFC has dealt with issues in the past in Las Vegas with Conor McGregor and Khabib Nurmagomedov. Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier have also gotten into a few scuffles, which has caused chaos. One would have to think extremely hard to remember a time something like that happened for boxing.
Top Rank’s Bob Arum and TGB Promotions’ Tom Brown understood the decision of the NSAC. Todd duBoef, Arum’s stepson, did not agree with the other two.
“In my 25 years in boxing, I’ve never heard of an administrative body stepping in and prohibiting a faceoff,” deBoef stated. “It’s the pinnacle moment before the fight. I am just shocked. That’s the money shot and not having that is frustrating.”
The weigh-ins for the Deontay Wilder v. Tyson Fury rematch on Friday are scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. ET. The fight will be taking place the next day inside the MGM Grand Garden Arena.