Jenna J: You have a big fight coming this weekend against Steve Cunningham, how do you feel about the opportunity?
Jenna: How do you feel about making your debut in the United States for this fight?Fury: I feel good you know, its about time, its been a long time coming, there’s always been different reasons of why and why not too and whatever’s, so I’m really happy that it’s finally happening. I’m glad the USA are getting to see the “Furious One” and I hope they like what they see.Jenna: This fight is for the #2 spot in the IBF, how does it feel to be getting that much closer to a title fight?FURY:It’s good it’s a good feeling to get closer and closer but I’m gonna tell you something, I think I’ll fight Cunningham and then I’ll fight Pulev for the mandatory spot and then I’ll end up fighting for the vacant IBF cuz I know that Wladimir(Klitschko) don’t fancy the job against me, and Ill probably fight whoever’s next in line for the vacant title.
JENNA: YOU THINK WLADIMIR WILL ACTUALLY DROP THE BELT INSTEAD OF FACING YOU?
FURY:I believe he’s gonna retire completely whether its the IBF, WBO, WBA, he’s gonna retire. Both of the Klitschko’s will retire before fighting Tyson Fury, that’s a fact. If they do fight me that’s a bonus, but I cant see them doing it to be honest, that’s my personal opinion I’ll end up fighting for the vacant title guaranteed.
JENNA: WHY DO YOU BELIEVE HE WILL RETIRE WHEN YOU ARE ONE OF THE BIGGEST FIGHTS OUT THERE FOR HIM?
FURY:I think that he doesn’t want to fight me, like I say against Steve Cunningham, he’s got the same problems, I’m big, young, ambitious and you know, I’ve got inside information on him. And you know Emanuel Steward was always in their ears saying Tyson Fury’s gonna take over from you guys, Tyson’s the next man, Tyson’s this, Tyson’s that and they start to believe it you know.
He’s getting on, he’s 37 now (Wladimir) and he’s got a job in politics so why mess up a legacy now, why risk it? He’s gonna retire as heavyweight champion I just believe that, maybe he won’t maybe he will, that’s just my personal opinion. I’m not holding my breath for a Klitschko fight cuz I don’t think there’s gonna be one for some reason or another, I don’t think there will be a fight between me and him.
JENNA: THERE HAVE BEEN A LOT OF RUMORS IN THE PAST THAT WLADIMIR HAD INTEREST IN FIGHTING YOU, HAVE YOU EVER BEEN OFFERED A CONTRACT?
FURY:I’ve never been offered a fight with a Klitschko. One time I was promised that whoever won out of me and Dereck Chisora, the winner would get a fight versus Wladimir and there was no go there. I won, then Chisora gets a shot at Vitali instead, so as far as I’m concerned I’ve never been offered a shot to fight any of them.
JENNA: TYSON, YOUR LAST FIGHT WAS AN ELIMINATOR FOR THE WBC, WHY ARE YOU FIGHTING ANOTHER ONE FOR A DIFFERENT BELT THIS TIME AROUND?
Fury: I’ll tell you why, because the WBC are playing stupid games. First of all I fight an eliminator versus Johnson yeah, WBC official eliminator. Worked my way up to number 3 and then you’ve got Jonathan Banks and Seth Mitchell fighting an eliminator at the same time. You’ve also got Chris Arreola and Bermaine Stiverne fighting a final eliminator. At the same time so you’ve got three people here, six people fighting eliminators and you’ve got the champion holding the belt hostage, he’s not fighting, he’s inactive and they are just doing what they want.
So obviously I cant be waiting around for other people to make decisions and playing with me like I’m on a piece of string like I’m a child, I’m a man you know I’ve gotta do what I’ve gotta do, if the WBC don’t want to play ball then I’ve got to move on to somebody who does want to play ball.
The IBF have said “win this, we’ll put you number 2 and then you can fight Pulev for the mandatory slot in the IBF,” so I’ve gotta go that route, but I believe I’ve already fought an eliminator, I’ll fight another eliminator here, I’ll fight a final eliminator against Pulev, then I’ll fight for the vacant title.
JENNA: YOU JUST MENTIONED KUBRAT PULEV. WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ON HIM AS A FIGHTER?
FURY:Pulev’s just a big strong European fighter like all of them, like Helenius like Pianeta they’re all limited fighters, big strong Europeans. They train hard in the gym and they think that’s going to win them fights, but Pulev will get his face boxed off and stopped round about eight rounds.
I call them stiff European’s, I know I’m a big European as well, but I call them stiff European’s because they come out in straight lines and have a high guard and you can just punch holes in them really. We’ll see, we’ll see if what I say is true, I believe I’m too good for Cunningham I believe I’ll chop Pulev to bits.
JENNA: SPEAKING OF FUTURE FIGHTS, DAVID HAYE IS SET TO RETURN IN JULY. IF YOU WIN YOUR NEXT FIGHT AND HE WINS HIS, DO YOU SEE YOURSELF FIGHTING HIM SOMETIME IN THE NEAR FUTURE?
FURY:I’m not interested in David Haye at all, he thinks he can have a play around in the jungle, have a year off, fight a journeyman in Dereck Chisora and come back an be mandatory for the title. If the WBC are going to let him (Haye) go fight for the title then let him do it, I’ve got no interest in fighting him, I’ve got Cunningham, Pulev, title. I’m not going to alter all my plans just so David Haye says yeah, I want the fight, let him go play somewhere else you know.
I’m not playing games its very serious for me, I’m putting my life at stake, I want to do things right, I’m two fights away from being mandatory for the IBF championship. Why would I then go and fight Joe Bloggs and give him a chance to beat me to take my slot. When I’m champion I can fight David Haye and the likes of those people. As far as I’m concerned I’ve got two fights and I’m going to be the heavyweight champion of the world.
JENNA: WHAT ARE YOUR FINAL THOUGHTS ON THIS UPCOMING FIGHT WITH STEVE CUNNINGHAM AND DO YOU THINK WE WILL SEE A KNOCKOUT IN THIS FIGHT?
FURY:Well, we’re all going to see if he can take a shot because I aint coming to New York to play games, I know that main event fights can tend to go opposite ways that they are not supposed to. I watched Malik Scott versus that Russian guy, whatever his name was, and I thought Malik Scott deserved the win and he got a draw, and the Adamek vs Cunningham, Cunningham lost and I thought he won, you know there’s a few dodgy decisions going on so I’m not coming there to look for no points decisions.
I’m the away fighter and I’m coming to the guys local, to where he lives, so there’s gonna be a lot of support there for Steve Cunningham but I’ll have a lot of support there as well. I’m out to impress the fans, my debut in America, a top young heavyweight like me should put his fist straight through Steve Cunningham if I’m any good.
If I’m of any use at all I’ll knock Steve Cunningham out, if I’m no good then I’ll lose simple. I’m not putting pressure on myself, I’m just saying it as it is. A six foot guy 250 lbs 24 years old and in the best shape of my life, if I cant beat someone like Cunningham, where am I going?
He’s half the size of me, half the weight of me he’s got half the chin I have and what else can I say, I should be beating guys like this if I’m gonna go on and be the super champion that I believe I’m going to be. I believe I’m gonna be the undisputed heavyweight champion of the world and take on all comers and nobody’s going to beat me, so if Cunningham can beat me then I’m not going to do that am I obviously.
***Special thanks to Ruben for his help to bring this article to boxing readers