by Johnny Walker and Philip H. Anselmo
Showcasing the controlled side of his boxing personality last seen in his win over Dereck “Del Boy” Chisora, rising Anglo-Irish heavyweight Tyson Fury cruised to a unanimous decision win over American Kevin “Kingpin” Johnson tonight at the Odyssey Arena in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
While the crowd was restless at times during the contest, the 24-year-old Fury, who at times has seemed haphazard in his approach, showed that he can box to a game-plan, as he stayed within the parameters laid out by his uncle and trainer Peter Fury while piling up round after round against the stationary American.
Fury’s constant lateral movement, especially, frustrated Johnson, who admitted after the fight that he had hoped to lure the giant into a firefight along the ropes. Fury instead boxed, and dominated the proceedings with a sharp left jab–and even a right jab when he chose to change to the southpaw stance–that snapped Johnson’s head back all night.
Fury dug into Johnson’s body with some hard shots, which affected the American’s energy level as the bout progressed. He also showed an improved ability to throw multi-punch combinations, and even impressed himself after one such flurry in round eight, when he raised his arms in a victory salute.
Fury lacerated Johnson with some thudding shots in round eleven, but the American showed a steel jaw, even after absorbing another teeth-rattling combination.
The final scores of 119-110 and 119-108 (twice) reflected Fury’s domination (he had a point deducted in round seven for hitting on the break). Boxing Insider likewise had it 119-108 for Fury.
“I actually thought Fury showed signs of massive improvement,” says Boxing Insider heavyweight analyst Philip H. Anselmo.
“His movement, ring generalship, punch output, punch selection, and choosing to BOX in the fashion he did, in my opinion would give David Price and dare I say, Vitali Klitschko and maybe even Wladimir Klitschko fits.
“His head movement, footwork, and defense are greatly improved as well.
“I was impressed. It looks to me like Fury is inventing and IMPLEMENTING a style to face these other massive guys, and if he *keeps* improving this style, look out!”
The win was an important one for Fury, who now fights the winner of the upcoming contest between Chris Arreola and Bermane Stiverne for a shot at WBC champion Vitali Klitschko.
Should Klitschko decide to hang up his gloves, that fight could be for the WBC strap itself.