TGB Promotions President Tom Brown Discusses the Heavyweight Landscape
By: Hans Themistode
The Heavyweight division is about to heat up in the next few weeks. Oleksandr Usyk (16-0, 12 KOs) will make his Heavyweight debut when he takes on Carlos Takam (36-5-1, 28 KOs). Unified champion Anthony Joshua (22-0, 21 KOs), will be fighting in the U.S. for the first time as he battles against once beaten Andy Ruiz (32-1, 21 KOs). The “Gypsy King” Tyson Fury also takes his undefeated record and Lineal crown on the line when he takes on the obscure Tom Schwarz (24-0, 16 KOs) in Las Vegas. All of these men will be fighting in close proximity to one anther, and will be looking to make a statement.
Before any of these fighters step into the ring however, WBC champion Deontay Wilder (40-0-1, 39 KOs) will grace the ring first as he takes on Dominic Breazeale (20-1, 18 KOs) in what is certain to be a barn burner of a fight.
With so many intriguing matchups taking place in the Heavyweight division, who better to ask on their opinion of the Heavyweight landscape than TGB Promotions President Tom Brown. He gave us his thoughts on several of the top names in the Heavyweight division.
The reign of Wilder began in 2015, since then he has continued to dominate his opposition. Outside of a draw against Tyson Fury, Wilder has stopped every opponent he has stepped inside of the ring with. He has been a world champion for over four years which marks him as the longest current world champion.
His level of dominance has lead many to believe that he is in fact the best Heavyweight in the world. Count Tom Brown as one of those that believe’s the Tuscaloosa native is indeed the best Heavyweight fighter out there today.
“I think Wilder is the best Heavyweight in the world. He’s a great fighter and I believe he is the best.”
Brown’s thoughts are shared by many. The Heavyweight division is known for its big men with explosive power. Any fighter in the division can end a fight with one punch. Wilder’s power seems to boarder around a freakish level.
His adversary come May 18th, Dominic Breazeale, has only tasted defeat once. He has collected wins against solid opposition such as Carlos Negron, Eric Molina and Amir Mansour. Still, Breazeale is considered a long shot to defeat Wilder come fight night. Brown on the other hand doesn’t agree with that opinion.
“Breazeale is a terrific fighter. He’s only lost once and that was to Anthony Joshua who is another great fighter. People have to remember that Breazeale didn’t start boxing until he was 23 years old. He was good enough to make the 2012 olympic team. Do people understand how difficult it is to make that team? Especially without much amateur experience. He’s only going to get better and he’s going to give Wilder a very good fight come May 18th.”
Wilder vs Breazeale has all the makings of a great fight. These two also have a heated history outside of the ring which is sure to add fuel to the fire. As mentioned previously, many of the top Heavyweights are slated to enter the ring soon after Wilder.
Former unified Cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Usyk will be looking to make a statement as he enters the ring one week after Wilder.
“I think Usyk is unbelievable. He’s always impressed me, I think very highly of him. I think he’ll be a threat to anyone in the division because he’s so talented.”
Usyk, is on many if not all pound for pound lists. His introduction in to the Heavyweight division will make it an interesting one. He dominated the Cruiserweight division but will he able to do the same as he forays into the land of the big men is a question he must answer.
One fighter who will have his own questions to answer is Anthony Joshua. The unified champion won’t have a soft touch for his U.S. debut as his opponent Andy Ruiz, is as talented as they come.
“I think Joshua has a really tough fight ahead of him against Andy Ruiz. He has really fast hands, very skilled and the heart of a real warrior. I give him a real chance in that fight.”
As for how exactly Brown would go about ranking all of the Heavyweight’s he made sure to not mince words.
“Listen all of these fighters are great but I really believe that Deontay Wilder is the best Heavyweight in the world.”
It’s hard to argue with the sentiments spewed by Brown. However, with the big men all stepping inside the ring in short order, they can all stake their claim as the best in the world very soon.
Tyson Fury To Face Tom Schwarz June 15th
By: Sean Crose
Widely circulated rumors were confirmed on Saturday night when Top Rank Promotions announced that Tyson Fury, the undefeated heavyweight who many feel is still lineal champion of the world, would be facing the widely unknown Tom Schwarz on June 15th , reportedly at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada. It will be Fury’s first bout since signing a highly publicized and surprising contract with Bob Arum’s Top Rank promotional outlet several weeks ago. Fury was widely expected to rematch WBC heavyweight titlist Deontay Wilder after their entertaining and controversial battle last December, which had ended in a draw. The Englishman decided, however, to team up with Arum and ESPN instead.
The 24-0 Schwarz is essentially an unknown commodity. He has never fought in America, and has only fought outside of his native Germany on a few occasions. Although undefeated, Schwarz has yet to face anyone of note, much less anyone as high-level as Fury. With Wilder scheduled to fight Dominic Breazeale on Showtime this May, and multi-titlist Anthony Joshua set to face Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller on the DAZN streaming service in June, team Fury had to look for an opponent unencumbered by the politics of contemporary boxing.
Fury, one of the more colorful figures in boxing, can regularly be expected to do the unexpected. After stunning the fight world by besting long reigning heavyweight king Wladimir Klitschko late in 2015, the now 27-0-1 Englishman descended into a world of depression, booze, drugs, and food. Emerging from the darkness, Fury then went on to surprise many when he almost beat the feared American puncher Wilder late last year. Now Fury has taken people by surprise again by teaming up with Arum and ESPN. Few, however, will likely expect any surprises when Fury steps back into the ring on June 15th in order to battle Schwarz.
With the heavyweight division now being more competitive than it has been in years, the three top fighters in the division, Fury, Wilder, and Joshua, are nonetheless fighting under different promotional banners, which will make any matches between two of the three men quite difficult to make from here on in. In terms of legacy, and also finances, each fighter – along with the fighter’s teams – will most likely want to eventually settle all matters in the ring, however. How such clarity will come about, remains to be seen at this point.
Tom Loeffler: “I Think Both Gennady And Canelo Owe The Fans The Rematch”
By: Sean Crose
“If the guys want to make the fight,” promoter Tom Loeffler told Boxing Insider’s Jeandra LeBeauf, “then there’s a way to do it. I’m easiest promoter to work with.” Loeffler was promoting the December 9th Orlando Salido-Miguel Roman card, which will be aired live on HBO from the Mandalay Bay in Vegas. “Whenever you can put on two Mexican warriors,” said Loeffler, “that’s a type of fight that the fans get excited for.” While admitting that neither Salido nor Roman were crème de la crème caliber boxers, the promoter claimed that their battle “has fight of the year written all over it.”
Loeffler also spoke of the hoped for “Superfly II” card. The original “Superfly,” which went down at the Stub Hub Center in California last September, was a huge success and Loeffler hopes to replicate it. “That was really one of the most exciting shows we ever worked on,” Loeffler said fondly of the original card. “Naturally it (“Superfly II”) would be (Sisraket Sor) Rungvisai versus (Juan Francisco), Estrada,” he stated, as Rungvisai destroyed Roman Gonzalez in the original “Superfly” while Estrada bested Carlos Cuadras.
“Hopefully, we can do something with (Naoya) Inoue,” he said, adding that when it comes to Gonzalez, “the doors always open for him.” Loeffler was clearly happy with the superflyweight division in general. “You can really mix and match the fighters,” he said. “Were targeting February (for ‘Superfly II’).” Yet Loeffler clearly was willing to speak of a variety of subject with LeBeauf. “I have a good relationship with Eddie,” he said in reference to British super promoter Eddie Hearn. “He delivered Kell Brook (who faced Loeffler’s own Gennady Golovkin last year), which was a tremendous fight.” Loeffler admitted, however, that he was upset Golovkin never got to face Hearn’s star at the time, Carl Froch. “That’s one fight that I wish we could have done,” Loeffler said.
Talk of course turned to the middleweight division, where a rematch between Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez for divisional supremacy is widely desired by fans. “Clearly from the GGG side, we’re committed to making the rematch,” he stated. Loeffler also quoted Golovkin, who reportedly claimed that: “If Canelo says he’s a champion, then he’s got to fight me.” Golovkin, after all, is still king of the division. Fellow middleweight titlist Billy Joe Saunders likewise came up. Loeffler was clearly unimpressed the first time there were talks of the Englishman facing Golovkin. Now, however, with Saunders showing a willingness to face hard hitting David Lemieux, Loeffler thinks a showdown with Saunders is a possibility.
First, however, comes Canelo-GGG II. “ That’s really the biggest fight that can be made in the sport of boxing,” said Loeffler. “I think both Gennady and Canelo owe the fans the rematch.”