Over the weekend, Tyson Fury returned from his “retirement” and took on Derek Chisora for a third time. In the fight, Fury put on a masterclass with unified champion Oleksandr Usyk sitting ring side. Now the stage is set for an undisputed match but in all fairness it’s been set. But it’s Monday after the fight and we’re gonna break it down in Aftermath.
Derek Chisora: (Almost) Nothing Good
Derek Chisora got beat from bell to bell in the bout with Fury. He was beat so bad that, while he didn’t fall, the referee called the fight off in the 10th. While it does make Chisora tough and a hard-to-put-away fighter, it doesn’t particularly make him competitive when in with the elite of boxing’s heavyweight division.
Chisora fought against Fury the same way he‘s fought at the end of his career. He dipped his head and winged overhands hoping to connect with The Gypsy King. This hasn’t worked against the likes of Oleksandr Usyk, Joseph Parker, Dillian Whyte, and it sure didn’t work against Tyson Fury.
While Chisora left a lot to be desired with his fight this weekend with Tyson Fury, he did show some stuff we can glean from Fury’s defensive game. Consistently, Derek Chisora landed to the body of Fury. He banged away at the midsection of the lineal champion and showed that there was an opening for him there. The only problem with it was that every time Derek Chisora threw to the body, he would gas himself out with the lunging and swinging more than Tyson Fury would get tired with the body work. This has a negative cost on Derek Chisora and while he showed heart and courage, the body work did nothing for him as Fury took over later into the fight.
Regardless, Chisora is very clearly not the fighter we knew him to be. Since 2016, he’s struggled with an 8-7 record, albeit it with some of the best in the world. But for a fighter that is revered so much, Chisora’s record isn’t the best in recent years.
It may be time to talk retirement for Derek Chisora. While heavyweights can fight into their 40s, Chisora is more battle worn than most. I’m not saying retire off a loss, Chisora doesn’t deserve that. But he doesn’t need to be taking on Joe Joyce or Deontay Wilder in his farewell fight. His skills aren’t there for that level of fighting anymore. Take a victory lap, Chisora. You’ve earned it.
Tyson Fury: Meaningless Perfection
Now 33-0-1, Tyson Fury is in the pursuit of perfection as the lineal and the WBC World Heavyweight Champion. He’s taking all these fights: Derek Chisora 3, Dillian Whyte, and talks of others like Anthony Joshua and Joe Joyce. Simply put, they don’t matter. These fights do nothing more for the legacy for Tyson Fury. The fight he needs to take is the one everyone wants: Oleksandr Usyk.
Nonetheless, Tyson Fury looked great. With the exception of the first round, Fury dominated Chisora. To deal with the fighting style of Chisora, Fury took his time, utilized his jab, and landed the power shots that really put a hurting on his foe.
As mentioned earlier, Chisora has he propensity to dip his head to get in the pocket with a fighter to land. To deal with this, Tyson Fury kept Chisora on a steady diet of crosses, feints, jabs and uppercuts from the rear side. This brutalized Chisora who was grasping at straws early on in the fight.
In figure 1 above, we can see Tyson Fury utilizing the skiddishness of Derek Chisora as early as the second round. With such a good jab, the probing of Fury is a constant threat for Tyson Fury’s opponents. (1) Fury will often probe and slap with the jab, gauging reactions out of his opponents in any particular moment of the fight. We can see Chisora turning away his head and that’s all Fury needs to see. (2) Fury will show one strike, like the check hook here, which opens up the rear uppercut. Fury always does a good job of knowing how each punch will make a fighter react and he picks that up on the fly. Once he does that, he works out which openings will be there off his newly-found feints. As you can see, (3) with Chisora leaning away, Fury finds a home for the rear uppercut that blasts Chisora. Fury would find these openings all night on Chisora and the more Fury found them, the more reactive Chisora became.
The feints are always a factor when fighting Tyson Fury. He routinely mixes in the feints with the actual punches and he sells them well. A check hook might be a probe. Or he might be looking to land something of consequence. It’s part and parcel of the Fury fighting style. It’s the herky-jerkey motion that confuses his opponents and gives them paralysis from analysis.
In figure 2 we can see one such time that Fury used the feint to get through Chisora’s high guard. (1) Backing his opponent into a corner, Fury is stalking his prey. He will step in with the lead foot and throw his hand down as if a power shot was coming. This only works because when Tyson Fury actually wants to hit he does the exact same motion. With an effective feint, it is imperative that the fake looks as close to identical as the real thing as possible. (2) The key to the feint is the right hand of Tyson Fury that is the perceived threat from Derek Chisora. Fury’s conditioned him over the two’s trio of fights that a thrown hand down means a cross is coming. Except that cross will not come. With Chisora’s eyes on Fury’s right hand, Tyson Fury sneaks the left check hook up and around the guard of Derek Chisora, landing clean and forcing the Brit to cover up in a bad spot in the corner of the ring.
Fury also channeled his inner Muhammad Ali in this fight too. I’m not talking about the dancing, the Ali shuffle or any of those antics. I am talking about the jab. With Chisora bum rushing a good amount of the fight, Tyson Fury was forced on his back foot more often than normal. But this didn’t slow him down. Fury flicked the jab out there on he back foot and would plant just as Chisora decided to slow down and fire in a cross that would score points for Fury. Ali was a master at this and it’s not something you see quite often in the heavyweight division. For Fury, it comes natural with the technical nature of his game.
Of course the next fight for Tyson Fury has to be Usyk. Fans have been wanting a unification bout in the heavyweight division since Anthony Joshua and Deontay Wilder were running the show. But Fury, who seems to not have the need to take the fight, has been the real hold up. Fans will continue to hold his feet to the fire to see the fight everyone has been clamoring for. Unify the heavyweight division. It will either be a long live the king moment for Tyson Fury, or the usurping of the throne.
Your friendly neighborhood fight fan. I watch way too many fights and my wife lets me know it.