Tyson Fury lifestyle blamed for devastating Oleksandr Usyk loss - 'He's not that special'

Tyson Fury speaks to the media after his undisputed heavyweight title fight with Oleksandr Usyk
Tyson Fury speaks to the media after his undisputed heavyweight title fight with Oleksandr Usyk -Credit:Richard Pelham/Getty Images

Tyson Fury’s lifestyle is to blame for his loss to Oleksandr Usyk, according to a heavyweight contender.

The ‘Gypsy King’ saw his undefeated record end on Saturday night in the first undisputed heavyweight title fight for almost 25 years. The judges awarded Usyk a split decision victory but the most memorable moment came in the ninth round, when the Ukrainian fighter seemingly came close to a spectacular KO win at Fury’s expense.

Post-fight, Fury confirmed his intention to activate a rematch clause as he seeks to avenge his first-ever professional defeat and prove himself to be the best heavyweight of his generation. Ahead of a second fight, Fury has been told to make changes to his lifestyle by heavyweight contender Michael Hunter.

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“I think that this is one of the best Tyson Fury’s that you’ve seen,” Hunter told Boxing Social. “He’s been spotty. He has a certain peak but he doesn’t stay at that peak and Usyk has been frightening at a higher level and staying consistent. I think that that’s what everyone kind of recognises, that he has the potential, but he’s been up and down.

“You’ve got to ring that certain lifestyle outside of the ring and I think that‘s where the victory was won from Usyk,” he continued. “He lives a certain lifestyle, inside and outside of the ring. He’s a god-fearing man. I just think the mental fortitude pushed him through this fight and it doesn't surprise me at all.”

Usyk is responsible for the sole loss on Hunter’s record (22-1-2) in a fight for the WBO cruiserweight title back in 2017. The new undisputed heavyweight king has achieved the same feat across two weight divisions, but Hunter has argued that Usyk’s skills in the ring are not extraordinary.

“I would love to fight him again. I don’t know if I’ll get that opportunity but when I fought him, I saw a lot of different holes,” Hunter explained. “Even now, you could see that there’s nothing super special about him.

“He’s not super fast, he’s not super strong. His main thing is discipline. He has a great team as well. That was another negative and fault of mine that I haven’t had a great team and great support like he has.

“People that have a greater understanding of how you work, push you where you’re weak and stop you when you're going too hard, that’s a very, very important thing when it comes to boxing.”