Tyson Fury showed up to WWE Raw as advertised tonight, having appeared on last Friday’s premiere of WWE SmackDown on FOX and getting into an altercation of sorts with pro wrestler Braun Strowman.
Security stepped in on Friday and the two didn’t get to really go at it, but tonight on Raw, they did. The hype for Fury’s appearance is that WWE were offering the often-controversial Fury — less controversial in recent years, to be fair — a live microphone on worldwide television. Would he say something outrageous or flat-out offensive?
Nah, Fury is playing the game these days, at least to the degree he plays the game, and looking to become a star in the United States. His fights this year with Tom Schwarz and Otto Wallin haven’t achieved that — though the Wallin fight wound up being much more entertaining than expected thanks to a bad pair of cuts on Fury — so the idea with cross-promoting him on WWE television is to get his name out there further. And yes, WWE are going along with LINEAL! They even said he was “considered one of the greatest boxers of all time,” which is...well, y’know.
In terms of the story being told in WWE, Fury was there tonight demanding an apology from Strowman, who had thrown fellow wrestler Dolph Ziggler in Fury’s direction on Friday, resulting in Fury jumping the guardrail. Fury was shown backstage with his family at one point, and also being cordial toward other wrestlers, like The Miz and Cedric Alexander, as he strolled out for his main event promo segment.
Strowman had indicated earlier in the night that if Fury asked nicely, he might be willing to give him the apology he wanted. But Fury wasn’t asking nicely, he was demanding the apology.
.@BraunStrowman awaits the next move of @Tyson_Fury on #RAW! pic.twitter.com/8xryQ1x3ZL— WWE (@WWE) October 8, 2019
The two traded a couple of pretty good burns, Strowman referencing the “slow ass 10 count” from Fury’s fight with Deontay Wilder last December, and Fury noting that unlike himself, Strowman has never won a heavyweight championship in his own world.
And then the two went at it. Fury was gingerly carried into the ring corner by Strowman, and they did close brawling stuff so as to not expose Fury’s lack of training in make believe fighting.
Fury did throw some phantom punches at the security squad initially sent in to break the two up, and, well, it didn’t look great, but it was also nice of Fury to not concuss some poor extra just for the sake of making it look better.
It's an all-out BRAWL between @BraunStrowman & @Tyson_Fury in the middle of the ring on #RAW! pic.twitter.com/AHdGdEEbaJ— WWE (@WWE) October 8, 2019
Fury and Strowman battled further until the show went off the air, and it doesn’t appear as though the issue is settled, so don’t be surprised to see Tyson Fury make further WWE appearances. He’s not going to fight for the rest of the year, but he is tentatively slated to return to action next February in a rematch with Deontay Wilder, provided Wilder beats Luis Ortiz in another rematch on Nov. 23.
All in all, Fury did much better on the mic than most outsiders do when they appear on wrestling TV. Usually they tend to overcorrect and come off even dumber than wrestling normally is, but Fury was pretty much just his normal self, which works way better. Physically, I mean, he’s not a pro wrestler, and even the simplest stuff like throwing a good worked punch can’t be learned in an afternoon.
Will Fury ever actually step into a WWE ring for a match? Hey, maybe. Floyd Mayweather did it back in 2008 to wrestle Big Show at WrestleMania 24. But if you’re going to do Fury-Strowman in a WWE ring, the only places it makes sense are WrestleMania, which will come too close to Wilder-Fury II, or one of their Saudi Arabia shows.
The next of those is scheduled for Oct. 31, and that might be too quick to make Fury even celebrity decent as a wrestler. Mayweather didn’t fight between Dec. 2007 and Sept. 2009, so he had time to put in a few months after beating Ricky Hatton to get ready for Mania in March 2008.
Anyway, we’ll see. It’s all a bit of fun, and maybe it’ll make Fury a bigger name and maybe it won’t, but it isn’t hurting to give it a shot.