One of the longest heavyweight championship reigns in boxing history ended on Saturday in Dusseldorf, Germany, when Tyson Fury (25-0, 18 KO) defeated Wladimir Klitschko (64-4, 53 KO) by unanimous decision to capture the WBA, WBO and IBF heavyweight titles.
After 18 consecutive title defenses, Klitschko lost for the first time since 2004 despite being heavily favored. The 6-foot-9 Fury became the first British heavyweight champion since David Haye and the first lineal heavyweight champion since Lennox Lewis’ retirement in 2004.
According to CompuBox, both fighters landed 23 percent of their punches in a fight that went all 12 rounds but saw a lack of connecting shots. Fury landed 86 of 371 punches while Klitschko landed just 52 of 231. Fury had a 48-18 advantage in power shots landed.
Fury had a rare size and reach advantage over Klitschko, giving the Ukranian problems landing throughout the fight. With Klitschko unable to connect, Fury did enough to win most rounds despite minimal action. Fury avoided any major mistakes and delivered the more damaging blows, even if they were sparingly thrown throughout the bout.
After the fight, Fury already appeared to be looking toward a rematch. If Klitschko exercises a rematch clause in his contract, it seems Fury would be happy to defend his title against the longtime champ.
"I’d like to come to Germany again to fight Wlad," Fury said in the post-fight press conference. "Wladimir Klitschko was the number one in the division. Probably the pound-for-pound king."
When asked about a potential unification fight with WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder, Fury quickly shrugged it off.
"Why do we need to mention Deontay Wilder? Let’s laugh at his name, shall we?" the new champion said. "If Deontay Wilder wants a unification fight he is going to have to wait, because Wladimir Klitschko has a round two ... ding ding ding."
In speaking about a rematch, Klitschko said “we’ll see how the cookie crumbles. Work it out and let you all know.” Still, the former champion did give an indication that he would step in the ring to fight Fury once again.
"I congratulate Tyson. He won the fight. All I can say is ‘to be continued.'"