Tyson Fury and Dillian Whyte finally met up at today’s press conference for Saturday’s huge heavyweight title fight at Wembley Stadium, and produced something pretty rare: A fairly pleasant, good-humored event featuring two guys who did no more than promise a great fight in a few days.
There was a near dust-up when the fighters went to face off after their statements, with Fury’s father John and members of Whyte’s entourage exchanging some words and moving toward one another, but Tyson and Dillian themselves took control of the situation, shouting at their teams to back off and relax.
“I’ve just prevented a big ruckus on stage,” Fury told BT Sport’s Steve Bunce backstage after the press conference had ended. “People want a big ruckus at press conferences, all the screaming and shouting and punching. Listen, let the two boxers do a fight and enjoy it. It’s not for entourages to get involved or anything like that.
“I had to be a professional and say, ‘Look, let’s step back, let me and him do what we gotta do, and that’s it.’ We’re here to do a fight. The man’s doing his job, getting paid to do it, and so am I. People are in for a real fight. We don’t need to scream and shout at press conferences.”
Fury (31-0-1, 22 KO) and Whyte (28-2, 19 KO) definitely didn’t scream and shout otherwise, paying respect to one another repeatedly.
“He’s a good fighter. He’s a good, strong, solid man. He’s big, he’s strong, he’s tough, he’s game. He’s got a good punch on him, good power, he’s knocked out a lot of men,” Fury said of Whyte. “He’s had a good learning career, as well. He’s got a lot of experience in the fight game, he was also a kickboxer and an MMA man, as well. He’s definitely a man that needs a lot of respect, and that’s what I’ve given him all this training camp.
“I haven’t left any stones un-turned. I’ve trained as hard for Dillian as I have for Wilder or Klitschko or anybody else. He’ll be fighting the best Tyson Fury. There’s no excuses from me.”
Fury recalled the two of them sparring years ago, and brushed that off as anything meaningful, saying only that they’re both now different versions of themselves, “a lot improved” as fighters, and that they’d been friendly all those years ago. Fury related how he treats guys he brings into camp with respect, and noted that the two “went out for a drank, ate together, and slept together,” which drew a big reaction from Whyte, and then big laughs from the two of them after they’d explained that they slept in the same quarters and not, you know, sensually.
“It’s about being able to adapt and make decisions quickly, because Tyson Fury says one thing and does another thing,” Whyte said of his opponent. “He might decide he wants to box or he wants to fight, so I need to be able to adapt and do my thing, and keep adapting to whatever he does. That’s what it takes to win the fight. I’m just going to envision being able to adapt quickly and make the decision when I need to make it.”
Fury, who continues to insist this will be his final fight — and also knows nobody believes him — commented on the two of them fighting in front of 94,000 or so fans at Wembley Stadium on Saturday.
“Me and him probably didn’t think we’d be doing 90-odd-thousand people at Wembley,” he said of himself and Whyte. “We’re looking forward to an awesome, memorable night. This will break all records. For an old boxing match with two old boys people wrote off all their careers, we ain’t done bad, have we?”
“It’s massive. This is the moment I’ve been waiting for. It’s a big fight,” Whyte added. “Like Tyson said, we didn’t expect to be here, me especially. I’m here. I’ve taken risks time and time and time again. I’ve had a couple slip-ups along the way, but I’m here and ready to go. You’ll hear no bullshit from me. I’m here and ready to rock and roll.”
Bad Left Hook will have live coverage of Fury vs Whyte on Saturday, April 23, starting at 2 pm ET, including round-by-round updates.