Within shouting distance of Madison Square Garden, Legends Sports Bar played host to the final press conference for the Steve Cunningham/Tyson Fury heavyweight showdown scheduled for Saturday afternoon at The Theater at MSG.
Entitled “Heavyweights Return to the Mecca” the twelve round bout will pit Philadelphia’s Cunningham (25-5, 12 KO) against the UK’s Fury (20-0, 14 KO) with the IBF’s #2 ranking and a shot at the #1 contender at stake.
Main Events CEO Kathy Duva chaired the dais and welcomed NYSAC chair Melvina Latham and co-promoter Mick Hennessy. After each dispensed with their official remarks and co-feature fighters Curtis Stevens and Derrick Findley exchanged pleasantries, the microphone was handed over to the main event combatants.
Fury stated that there really wasn’t much to talk about and he didn’t have much to say. “Training camp is finished, we’re done with sparring, it was a great camp, I’m in great shape and yada, yada, yada,” the six foot nine inch Irishman stated. “It’s on to Saturday now and people need to be ready to hear the sound of Cunningham falling to the canvas.”
The proud and poised Cunningham wasn’t in a very talkative mood either. “All the work is done. Camp was great, I’ve put in the preparation and training. Fury has never faced a boxer with my ability. I’m a fighter and now I’m ready to do what I do.”
With the fighter’s remarks out of the way all that was left to take care of was a coin toss to determine which fighter would enter the ring second during introductions.
Suddenly Fury had a lot to say. “This is the Tyson Fury road show coming to America. I am the attraction, I’m the one driving the promotion. Steve Cunningham is merely an opponent, a stepping stone. This is about me, me, me and there should not even be a question as to who enters the ring second.”
As Duva tried to find an agreeable solution to the situation, Cunningham and his trainer Brother Nazim Richardson shook their heads in disbelief. With Duva still searching for a compromise, Richardson asked, “do you have children Cathy? Then you’ll know what to do.”
With the ring introductions still to be determined, the fighters got together for the traditional face off. Fury’s distinct height and weight advantage was apparent as the two stood toe to toe. What may not have been as readily clear to observers was the heart, skill, and determination contained within Cunningham’s six foot three inch physique.
Therein lies the intrigue and excitement for Saturday’s fight.
“Heavyweights Return to the Mecca” Saturday April 20th at The Theater at Madison Square Garden. First bout 1:15pm, televised broadcast begins at 4:00pm on NBC. Tickets priced at $50 and up available at Ticketmaster and the Madison Square Garden Box Office.