Bellew: Usyk Could Beat Wilder and Ruiz
Former cruiserweight champion Tony Bellew, who faced Oleksandr Usyk in his final fight — and Usyk’s last at cruiserweight — feels Usyk will be a champion at heavyweight. And he feels while Deontay Wilder presents the quickest path for Usyk to accomplish such a feat, Usyk could probably handle Andy Ruiz Jr. as well.
Usyk makes his heavyweight debut on October 12 in Chicago against Chazz Witherspoon.
The undefeated Usyk became WBO cruiserweight champion in 2016, three years after his pro debut, and went on to become the first undisputed cruiserweight champion by winning the 2017-18 World Boxing Super Series. He then brutally knocked out Bellew in November 2018 to retain the undisputed crown before vacating all four titles in March to move up to heavyweight.
Bellew sees Usyk eventually becoming a heavyweight champion and he feels the Russian’s easiest path towards a title is through Wilder, the current WBC champion. Bellew feels while Wilder is tall, he doesn’t have the mass of someone like Tyson Fury or Anthony Joshua, who he feels Usyk may struggle against.
“Don’t get me wrong, if Wilder lands on him then it’s not going to end well for Usyk, but you can say that about any heavyweight who Wilder lands on,” Bellew said. “I just think [Joshua and Fury] are too big for him. Fundamentally, he’s a much better boxer than all of them, and I include Fury in that, but he’s just too small to compete with them for 12 rounds. I think the size of Fury and Joshua would be a massive advantage and I don’t think Usyk could overcome it.”
Bellew adds, however, that he feels Usyk would be ready to challenge and defeat Ruiz, the current WBA/IBF/WBO/IBO champion on a moment’s notice if need be.
“If he was to fight Andy Ruiz tomorrow, then I think he’d win that fight by just being himself and doing what he does best,” Bellew said. “There are only a few guys I don’t see him winning against, but he’s by far the most skilled fighter in the division and that will always give him a chance. Watching his moves there will be interesting and I wish him all the very best. He’s an excellent fighter and I’m certain he will do well.”
Original Story: Sky Sports