Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury clash at final presser ahead of Saturday’s heavyweight title fight

Anthony Cocks

Australian-based boxing journalist Anthony Cocks has been covering the sport for over 15 years for various print and online publications. He refuses to believe that Roberto Duran ever lost to Tommy Hearns and says that Jeff Fenech would destroy Chuck Norris, Bruce Lee and Muhammad Ali on the same night.

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Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder clashed on stage during a heated exchange at the final press conference to promote their heavyweight title fight at Los Angeles’ Staples Center this Saturday night.

Reigning WBC heavyweight champion Wilder 40-0 (39) said Fury had had his time when he defeated Wladimir Klitschko for the IBF, WBA and WBO heavyweight titles three years ago before walking away from the sport until the middle of this year.

“This is a moment I’ve been waiting for my entire career; this is my time,” said Wilder. “Fury had his – when he beat Klitschko, that was his window to do whatever he had to do. How he took upon his responsibilities as a champion was up to him. But now it’s my time. I’ve sat patiently, waiting.”

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The 33-year-old Bronze Bomber insisted the fight will not go the distance.

“I will knock Tyson Fury out,” he said. “They say I’m the puncher and he’s the boxer, but the same thing was said when I beat (Bermane) Stiverne. I’m going to show you how well I can box. He will go down.”

The bout will be Fury’s third fight back since his two-and-a-half layoff to deal with depression and substance abuse issues. He stopped Albanian cruiserweight Sefer Seferi in four uninspiring rounds in June before boxing his way to victory in a 10-round fight against Italian Fringe contender Francisco Pianeta in August.

“I don’t remember a training camp going any better than this one has gone,” said Fury 27-0 (19). “I am injury free. Sparring went fantastic – no complaints, no arguments, no marks on this beautiful face.

“On Saturday I’m going to punch [Wilder’s] face in for him. I’ve heard a lot of people say ‘Wilder by knockout or Fury on points’, but I’m telling you now, Wilder’s going to get knocked out by me.”

But the 30-year-old self-styled ‘Gypsy King’ admitted victory would be a challenge for him.

“It won’t be straightforward. Wilder has all the momentum,” he said. “He’s coming off seven fights since 2015 when I stopped. I’ve only had two, so he’s match fit.

“It will be a hell of a competition of who has the best plans, who does what first. I’m very confident I’m going to lead him into a lot of traps.”

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