Tyson Fury rules out move to MMA ahead of Deontay Wilder trilogy
WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury speaks to reporters at a press conference in Los Angeles ahead of his trilogy with Deontay Wilder. | Photo by Mikey Williams/Top Rank Inc/Getty Images
“I’m a stand-up fighting man, I don’t wrestle up and down and grab each other’s arms and sit on each other and all that”.
WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury wants to make it clear that he has no intention of transitioning to the world of MMA ahead of his boxing trilogy with Deontay Wilder on July 24.
Fury had previously teased of a move to mixed martial arts after training with top-five UFC middleweight Darren Till in 2019 but, after his most recent training session with Californian Nick Diaz, ‘The Gypsy King’ admits that MMA just isn’t the sport for him, citing a lack of interest in ‘grappling up and down on the floor’.
“No, I’ve got no real interest in grappling up and down on the floor and all that sort of stuff. I’m a stand-up fighting man, I don’t wrestle up and down and grab each other’s arms and sit on each other and all that,” Fury, who called out UFC heavyweight champ Francis Ngannou in April, told talkSPORT in a recent interview.
“I’ve no interest in all that stuff; I like to stand up and fight so would I ever compete as an MMA fighter? Hell no! Would I compete with small gloves on in a cage in a fight? Yes. But no gripping and grappling. The noble art of standing up and what men have been doing for centuries; I don’t see any noble science in wrestling up and down the floor.”
Fury meant no disrespect to MMA fighters with his comments but said that you shouldn’t ever strike a man while he’s down.
“No disrespect to any of those guys who do that, but it’s none of my interest,” he said. “Nothing that I would ever want to do. In my world, when a man goes down, you stand back and let him come back up again because you don’t want a rock or a fall to spoil your victory.
“I’m not going to let someone say, ‘I tripped over and he beat me that way.’ I want him to get back up and fight fair. When a man goes down, you get in and give him a ten count and let him fight on if you can. That’s how we fight, that’s how it’s been going on for thousands of years.”
Fury will defend his WBC heavyweight title against Wilder on July 24 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The 32-year-old previously KO’d ‘The Bronze Bomber’ in a title rematch following their controversial 2018 draw at Staples Center in Los Angeles.