Lennox Lewis: Fury Still the Best Heavyweight
While Tyson Fury’s problems outside of the ring have rendered him unable to compete, there are many that still consider him the uncrowned king of the heavyweight division. One of those believers is former heavyweight champ Lennox Lewis, who says that Fury’s accomplishments in the ring cannot be erased by his troubles outside of it.
The former undisputed heavyweight champion still thinks Fury should be considered the best heavyweight in boxing. According to Lewis, Fury deserves that recognition, despite that the undefeated British boxer hasn’t fought since he upset Klitschko 14 months ago in Dusseldorf, Germany.
“I would say Tyson Fury right now,” Lewis told iFL TV recently when asked to identify boxing’s best heavyweight. “Although he’s going through a little bit of problems, I would still rate him No. 1. He proved it."
"And maybe Klitschko wasn’t his full self. But if you come to fight, you have to be prepared to go at the best, and do the best that you can and box at the best of your ability.”
Fury became the first fighter to defeat Klitschko in 11 years and snapped the former champion’s 22-fight winning streak in November 2015.
The 28-year-old Fury’s rematch with Klitschko was postponed from July 9 to October 29 and then canceled altogether because Fury sought treatment for alcoholism, drug addiction and depression. Ukraine’s Klitschko (64-4, 53 KOs) wants to avenge his unanimous-decision defeat to Fury, but based on the uncertainty surrounding Fury (25-0, 18 KOs), instead will challenge another unbeaten Brit, Anthony Joshua (18-0, 18 KOs), for his IBF heavyweight championship April 29 at Wembley Stadium in London.
Lewis, who retired 13 years ago, also acknowledged that it’s unfortunate Fury’s career has taken a terrible turn due to his personal problems."
“Some people, when they’re champions of the world, can handle it,” Lewis said. “Some people can’t handle it. In order to be champion of the world, you have to conduct yourself as a champion. You have to realize there’s a lot of people that look up to you, a lot of people watching you, that you’re gonna affect a lot of people’s lives."
“So you have to be careful, because having that title is a big title, and it means so much because you have to look at the men who held it before you, how great they were. Muhammad Ali, Larry Holmes, Mike Tyson, Lennox Lewis, all the heavyweights, Evander Holyfield, all conducted themselves as champions, which we should all do.”