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Tyson Fury is flawed and Oleksandr Usyk will exploit his mistakes, says top boxing analyst

Oleksandr Usyk and Tyson Fury

ESPN boxing analyst Tim Bradley says he sees flaws in WBC heavyweight titleholder Tyson Fury 33-0-1 (24) that he thinks Ring Magazine and WBA, WBO and IBF heavyweight champion Oleksandr Usyk 21-0 (14) can exploit.

Britain’s Fury, 35, is scheduled to face boxing debutant and former UFC heavyweight champion Francis Ngannou in a 10-round non-title bout in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on Saturday night before heading into a four-belt unification bout with 36-year-old Ukrainian southpaw Usyk.

Bradley believes Usyk will see the same deficiencies in Fury that he does.

“I was watching Fury the other night and he’s a big guy and we pay attention to what he does well, but we don’t pay attention to what he doesn’t do well. He boxes in a lot of straight lines, he does,” Bradley said to FightHype.

“Yeah, he can box laterally, but he boxes in a lot of straight lines and he’s been boxing in a lot of straight lines recently.”

Bradley says this was never more evident than in Fury’s trilogy of fights against Deontay Wilder 43-2-1 (42).

“If you go back and watch him against Wilder and watch the first couple of rounds, you see when he’s stepping back he’s stepping back in a straight line. You’re going to see that if he continues that, Usyk will follow him out,” Bradley said.

“He’s going to be looking to follow him out because Fury’s feet aren’t set. He’s not punching and he’s just stepping back and trying to get out of range and you’re going to see Usyk attacking his body a whole hell of a lot because he’s so tall, so big.

“It’s not like he crouches down and tucks his elbows in to block shots. He tried to get his whole body out of the way and he’s pretty slow on his feet.”

At six-foot-nine and 265-pounds, Fury will have a decided height, reach and weight advantage over Usyk, who boxed as low as middleweight as an amateur. He is expected to use his size to lean on Usyk in the clinches in an effort to tax his legs and let him know his strength.

But where the six-foot-three and 220-pound Usyk will have the upper hand is in speed, mobility and footwork as he seeks to keep turning the bigger man to keep him off balance.

“Usyk is a little more quicker to the point with his footwork,” Bradley continued. “Usyk is going to be looking to expose his body and to catch Fury on his way out in those straight lines. That’s when things are going to get interesting.

“If Usyk can not allow Fury to lay on him, tie him up and to maul him, he’s got a good chance. He does have a good chance.”