All behaved in a proper fashion on Tuesday, during the final presser for the Saturday scrap between Wladimir Klitschko. Or, maybe, improperly, if you assumed loose cannon challenger Tyson Fury would engage in some theatrical hijinks…
The presser took place in Dusseldorf, where the tangle between the 6-6 Klitschko, the pound for pound top fiver who hasn’t lost in a decade, and the 6-9 talker-extraordinaire Fury, will unfold.
In America, you can watch their face-off on HBO, on Saturday afternoon.
The stadium hosting the fight, Esprit, should be at capacity, 55,000 full. Wlad is 2-0 in Dusseldorf, having beaten Joseph Chingangu (1999) and Eddie Chambers (2010) in the same city.
A video package of Klitschko’s greatest hits was shown, and we saw challenger after challenger talk tough…and then take an L.
64 wins, 54 by KO..Klitschko took to the mic and spoke German first. In English, he said he’s fought in Dusseldorf before, and this time, it’s against a “colorful” guy. He said he heard Fury said he’s nervous, and that’s good, because it means he’s alert. He too is nervous before every fight, he said. He said he is sure the stadium will be sold out, and wished Fury good luck, shaking his hand.
He looked Fury in the eyes, while Fury looked straight ahead, for the record.
English was spoken at the almost somber presser by Fury. The 27-year-old Traveller promised “a real fight,” but no, he didn’t promise a win. Fury took the mic after a greatest hits package of some of his fight action and trash talking snippets were shown. He said he liked the video, stated that camp was solid, and that he is injury free. The task became that much more clear when he got to Dusseldorf, and admitted he was nervous, and shaky. Then he said he was sort of kidding. He joked that he was being mellow because he didn’t want to scare off Klitschko. He cracked on Wlad as an “old champion,” and said he hopes Wlad is ready to rumble.
Promoter Tom Loeffler showed off solid German as he presided over the hype session. You heard the words “Madison Square Garden,” comprehensible in any language, a few times from him.
Fury trainer Peter Fury promised “a real fight,” but no, he didn’t promise a win.
Klitschko trainer Johnathon Banks took to the mic. He said that division is in an interesting space, what with two giants throwing hands on Saturday. He said he’s loved the stuff Fury has done to hype the scrap, and he said he appreciates all the characters the sport boasts. “It’s going to be a great heavyweight fight,” Banks stated. “This is going to be one of the best matchups we’ve seen in a long time,” he continued, showing he learned more than training tips from Manny Steward.
Fury promoter Mick Hennessy encouraged all UK and Fury fans to hit Germany, to snag a ticket to see what he predicts: a Fury win by KO. “He fights like a warrior, he is a warrior,” said Hennessy.
Klitschko exec Bernd Bonte took to the mic and hyped the tangle in his native tongue.
There was then an announcement making certain fans know that the area will be secure, and that the standards of security at the stadium will be quite strict.The boxers took some queries from the press after all had turns at the mic.
–Wlad was asked how much an ab injury which postponed the fight affected him. The 39-year-old boxer, born in Ukraine, said that that’s happened before, and he’s fully ready for the fight Saturday.
–Fury said he thinks this will be “one of my easiest fights” because “I see so many chinks in the armor.” He expects to exploit the supposed weaknesses right quick on Saturday, he said.
–The gloves issue was spoken on. Fury didn’t like the first ones he was presented, and acceptable ones will be here in time for the fight, said Bonte.
–Klitschko was reminded that Manny Steward that Fury would be a future champ, and he said the same of Alex Povetkin, and he did that to motivate Wlad. Fury spoke up and took issue and said that when Wlad said anyone can become champ if they work hard enough. Not so..he could..and cousin Hughie, on site, could. But nobody else in the room could.
–The gloves issue was re-visited…Bonte busted on Hennessy and Fury for dithering, not signing off on a pair of gloves sent to them maybe five weeks ago. Hennessy said Fury trained in them for five weeks, and the gloves “kept on hurting his thumb. But he didn’t pull out,” he said, taking a poke at Wlad. Tyson then lightened the mood, joking that Mick and Bernd should step outside and settle it, bare knuckle. Hennessy then re-re-visited the issue, and they sparred over the not-present gloves, from a newish company in the space, Paffen Sport, some more.
–Fury was asked what a Traveller was. He said this group settles their differences by bare-knuckle fighting, that’s what and who they are.
–Wlad said Vitali showed up at camp, and hung out, no sparring. “It was like the old days, it was fun, because we haven’t done it in a long time,” he said.
–Fury said he did PED testing, WADA accredited, sometimes three times a month, and he’s clean. “I’ve been tested for the last quarter century,” Wlad said, saying he didn’t want to speak much on the subject.