Obviously, you’re on this big speaker tour with Tyson going across the UK, how’s the tour been going so far?
It’s been absolutely amazing the support we’ve been getting, all the fans have turned out in their droves. It’s just super. It’s an amazing experience for me.
I like integrating with other people, they get to know about the Fury family - old and new. It’s been great, and so far so good!
It’s been great to see packed venues. The British public have really taken to Tyson, but it’s weird to see the change. For example, when he came back from the Klitschko win it was a very different reaction, the media was getting on his back, but then obviously since the Wilder trilogy he’s come back, which has been an amazing story. The British public have fallen in love with him. What do you think has changed with the public when it comes to Tyson Fury?
I think they’ve realised what Tyson is like and who he is. They’ve got to know him personally through social media, through these events we’re doing because he’s done a few a tours now in the UK and people have warmed to him because he’s the people’s champion. He thinks like they do, he acts like they do and he’s got no airs and graces. He fits in with the working class people and they’re the people who’re buying the tickets and putting backsides on seats at the minute.
He’s helping a lot of people daily with their mental health, because he is a sufferer himself. He’s up and down like a yo-yo sometimes and I think he’s helping a lot of people along on their travels. There’s a lot more people out there than we think who’ve actually got these mental health problems and when they see a World Champion like Tyson coming out and speaking about his problems, I think people can relate to it.
A lot of people have a lot of problems, especially in this day and age, with the bills going up, inflation, the Government going one way and then the other - no one knows where they’re at exactly. So when Tyson goes onto a social media platform, or does these shows, he gives people confidence and he’s encouraging them to step forward and carry on. It’s a great thing, he’s a great person and what an ambassador to have for such a thing. I think he’s doing a marvelous job.
It’s something to really admire, I’ve read his book, it’s really inspiring.
There’s another Fury that’s been in the news this week - Tommy - with the Jake Paul fight falling through and we’re being told many different things. Could you shed some light on what’s transpired regarding the visa issues?
I can tell you exactly: Tommy wasn’t exactly in training, he’d only had about 10 days because he’d been on holiday and it was a surprising thing for him. I was a way out of it doing these tours and being busy elsewhere so I never got the chance to look at it properly. When i’ve paid attention, I noticed the whole thing wasn’t right anyway but I said “okay, it is what it is, if you want to go over there and box him, do it. You’re experienced enough now and it’s a 50/50 platform. I know you could be fitter, you’re overweight, but it’s entirely up to yourself because I’m busy and I can’t do it.” So he said “Okay then, I’ll do my own thing and I’ll go fight him anyway because I can beat him.”
Beating a Jake Paul is not a problem, by the way. We don’t look at him as any kind of a threat at all. When Tommy went to travel for the press conference in America his visa was denied. I don’t know the reasons for it, I’m not particularly interested. It’s all red tape to me and I don’t get involved in red tape. They’ve obviously going their reasons for doing it but it’s stopped play on the Jake Paul affair, only for one reason: can’t travel. Otherwise, Tommy would have been fighting him on the 6th of August, wherever he wanted to really. That’s not going to happen now. I always say: ‘what’s for you won’t pass you by’. If it comes again it comes again if it don’t, we’ll move on. He’s only 23 years old Tommy. I’m sure Jake Paul will still be interested, we’ve offered to box him anywhere else in the world for even less money - so the ball’s in his court, really.
At the minute, i’m just concentrating on this tour, I’m enjoying it, it’s summertime, i’m on my holidays - so I’ll think about Jake Paul and the rest of the boxing world in September!
You were involved in Tommy’s training, let’s say if he was going across to the US, do you know who the training team would be? There was some word going about that it might have been Shane McGuigan who was going to go over with him.
Not really. Tommy was running around last week like a headless chicken. He was listening to many different people. I said, it’s like this: if you want to box this kid and do it properly and have a full camp, I can’t work with you till September. I’m on this tour so I’ve got obligations to do these things. I explained the case to Tommy, but you know what young people are like - they get tempted by the lure of money and big pay cheques. I said if you’re going to do it, you’ll be doing it half-mast. From then on, I just let the reigns go of him.
So then he went to the McGuigans, he realised he’d done wrong. I’ve had Tommy since he’s been a kid. There’s only ever been me that’s trained him, there’s been nobody else. I’ve got an assistant to help us, but i’m the main guy who trains Tommy, me. I advise him, I manage him, I do everything for him. I just have assistants and it was assistants who were going with him to America. Not boxing trainers, just bag carriers really. Tyson said I can’t do it till September and I can’t. So if it can’t wait, he’s going to have to do what he does. I think he realises now that he’s got to get full time training, he needs a good 8 weeks camping, I’ll tweak him up whenever I can when I’m home for a few days here and there during the tour. I can have a look in and see what he’s doing. At the minute we’re just working on cardio and weight loss because he’s something like 105 kilos at the minute, he’s got to get right down to about 90, so he’s got a bit of work to do.
When the original date was announced in December there was that memorable press conference and you weren’t afraid to put on a bit of show. Is that something you enjoy when you’re at a press conference? Do you thrive off that build up energy?
Not really, no. I think a lot of it stemmed from what he’d been messaging Tommy. He was messaging him graphic stuff about his girlfriend. When I saw him, he started swearing first and I don’t even swear, but what I said I said. When you listen to the graphic stuff Jake Paul is saying about Tommy’s girlfriend which isn’t nice, the girl was very upset by it and I think my emotions got the better of me. These things happen in life, but do I regret what I said? No I don’t.
Jake Paul is a relatively new face in boxing, he’s a divisive figure but do you think he’s done some good for the sport in terms of bringing in fresh eyes?
Absolutely, couldn’t agree more. He’s done a great job bringing a lot more viewers to the sport of boxing. He’s started as a fledgling professional and I think he’s doing quite well from where he’s at to be honest with you. He needs a little bit more work on being a man, you know, but he’s done great things from where he’s at.
All these young people are tuning in because of Jake Paul, he’s got a lot of Instagram followers, we know that. I see his comments on the internet and I don’t really like him. I think he’s a sharp, clever guy but I think sometimes he thinks he’s cleverer than he actually is. You’ve got to live to gain experience and he thinks he knows everything. He’s made a few derrogatory terms about me lately, calling me a criminal, an inmate and all this business. You don’t hear me telling him that, do you? At the end of the day, you can sell fights in a different way that doesn’t involve being derogatory and bringing up people’s past. It’s not on today, we’re living in the 21st century and it’s nice to be nice. It’s a sport at the end of the day and Jake Paul has taken it personally.
If there’s one thing I know, it’s that when Jake Paul meets Tommy he’s going to get knocked out. I know he thinks Tommy’s scared of him but believe me there’s a lot of people who thought Tommy were scared. Fury’s are scared of no one. This is what we do, we’re bred to fight. We’re like the pitbull terrirers of the boxing world. There’s no fear in a Fury and he’ll find out that when he comes to fight - wherever it is in the world - he’s getting knocked spark out. He’s just not there, he hasn’t got enough experience, I watch him on the pads, I see him training and I know this game inside out - he cannot beat my son with a hammer in each hand. It’s just getting the fight on isn’t it - third time lucky, hopefully!
Jake Paul is taking on Hasim Rahman Jr in Tommy’s place, it’s his first professional boxer - what are your thoughts on that as a replacement?
How much are they paying him? [laughs]
Are they paying him to take a dive or something? I don’t know. It’s just bizarre isn’t it.
He looks tidy Rahman doesn’t he? I know he lost his last fight, he got knocked out by a heavyweight kid, but he actually looks technically a lot better than Jake Paul to be fair with you. Only in America, isn’t it? Bizarre things happen in America. But I’ll say this: I’ll put my money on Jake. Even though I don’t think he’s as good as Rahman if you know what I mean! [laughs]
I know you get this question a lot, but Tyson keeps saying a certain amount of money will tempt him out of retirement, is he really done with boxing? Is it over?
You can never say never. It’s like that song that Tyson sings all the time, it’s like the Hotel California, you can check out but you can never leave.
The thing is as a boxer, he’s spending a bit of time with his family, his children, doing what husbands and what fathers do. At the end of the day I think he’s enjoying himself but that will only last for so long.
It all depends on what happens with Joshua and Usyk. If Joshua get’s the win, then it’s game on. But do I think he’s come back? Yes I do. He says to me he’s done, I hear it every day, but no one knows him as well as I do. He can wake up one morning and say “right, back in the gym. Game on. Who’ve I got in front of me?” That’s just Tyson. He’s got nothing else, he lives such a mundane life out of the boxing world, and even he will get sick of that shortly.
He’s enjoying some well earned rest. He’ll have a few exhibitions and he’ll enjoy himself but if AJ beats Usky, which is a tall order, but IF he does, then it’s game on. Tyson’s not going to be able to resist that.
You mentioned exhibitions there, would you rather he goes straight into prize fighting or wouldn’t you mind the odd exhibition belt?
No I think the exhibitions are good for him. It gets him out there, it’s an enjoyable time for him, it’s what he wants to do, because he likes the aura. He likes the crowds, he likes fun and he likes to entertain. Tyson is a born entertainer, always has been from a kid. This is what he does best, so let him enjoy it.
But you know when the serious stuff starts, I’ll know. We’re all behind him, whatever he wants to do and I think that’s the best way to be. Let him off the leash, let him enjoy it and when the real stuff starts, we’re back there right behind him.
A lot will depend on Usyk v AJ 2, what does Joshua need to do to beat Usyk on August 20th?
Do you know what, I’m not going to comment on that you know. Because I’m not getting paid to do so. At the end of the day i’m sure his new trainer has everything in hand. I know what he has to do, but im not going to go public about it because it’s not fair on his new trainer. It’s not fair on myself or us because at the end of the day Tyson has offered to train him.
But let me tell you this much, if AJ has listened to Tyson and let him handle him for this one time only, Usyk wouldn’t have been a problem. He’s a problem now.
Do I think the plan he has from these so-called new trainers is going to work? Not with a man like Usyk, no. He’s a special fighter, Usyk. He’s very talented. You’ve got to pay mind to detail. Small detail beats a man like Usyk. I think they’re going to overlook that.
What AJ needs to do he’s not going to do anyway because they think more is better. They’re going to press him in training and they’re going to get blood, sweat and tears. You need more than that to beat a Usyk. They’ve got to train his mind, moreso than his body. He’s fit enough. How fit can you get? You’ve got to train what’s not there, and there’s a lot that’s missing from him at the minute. If he doesn’t train what I know is missing, he’s wasting his time. But there’s only us who know that and I’m not going to divulge my secrets because I can get a lot of money for them. He’s not paid me, so i’m not going to make it public what he should do.
Do I think he can do it with his new trainer? The answer’s no.
But heavyweight boxing, why people tune in, it’s only a matter of one punch. Usyk was marked up last time, he knew he was in a fight, he was cut to pieces. For my money, Joshua nearly got stopped in the last round and I think he was in a lot of trouble. I think Usyk knows what he’s dealing with now, moreso than before.
So AJ has a bigger problem now than he had last time. Because Usyk knows him know. He knows his strengths, he knows how hard he can punch, what he does best and what he doesn’t do. They’re going to work on things he doesn’t do. This is the problem. It’s a tall order.
Heavyweight boxing is one punch. AJ’s got the size and strength to clip him and it could be all over. But the form book says, Usyk is like trying to pick an eel up out of cold water. He’s slippery, moving all over the place. He’s awkward for anybody.
To be honest with you, Usyk gives Tyson a hard fight. We have the technology and the brainpower to overcome him. But is it an easy fight for my son? No it’s not. Even though I know Tyson will beat him, but Tyson will know he’s been in a fight. It’s a technical chess match. War. War chess i’d call it.
Usyk is a very tricky customer. Those guys that are 6 foot 2/3 and 15 and a half stone they’re the harder ones to beat, in my book. In my past experiences, a man 15 stone can punch just as hard as a man who’s 20 stone but he moves better. His coordination is better, because it’s natural for him to move around better because he hasn’t got so far to go with every move and twist he does.
You get a man who’s six foot 2/3, 15 a half stone, he can punch, he’s a southpaw, he moves well, his coordination is excellent. He’s a tall order for anybody. He’s the man to beat, apart from my son.
You’re not going to give a detailed picture about what AJ needs to do then?
No, why should I? He doesn’t do anything for me, so why should I do it for them?
They don’t give us any words of advice, even though we don’t need it. It would be nice for them to say “good luck guys” every now and again, instead of bitching about one another all the time. It’s a sport isn’t it, at the end of the day.
If we could help one another, wouldn’t it be great? Why employ all those other people, I’m sure it’s not about the money because Tyson would have done it for free. Tyson would have helped a fellow Brit for free because that’s what he’s like. These other people taking 10% are only after money, aren’t they? Whichever trainer he’s getting they’re only thinking about their cut. They’re not bothered about who wins. They only care about their share of the money.
We ain’t like that and that’s why we’re so successful. Tyson would have helped him for free - and I would - and we’ve got knowledge that no one else has. We must know something because we’re top of the game. We’re country miles infront of those other ingrates aren’t we.
Did Tyson try to contact Joshua’s camp himself?
I don’t know to be honest. He just said to me that he put it out there and it’s the truth, Tyson would have helped him.
Far as i’m aware he put it out there and he’s still waiting for AJ to respond to him. So Tyson’s not going to chase him up and down.
I always think in situations like this, when you’re up against it, you should look for any lifeline you can. Tyson threw him a lifeline. I think beneath everything, Tyson actually likes the guy.
I like AJ myself, I really do. He’s been good for the sport, he looks well, we’ve had some enjoyable nights. He fits the bill perfectly and I want to see him win because he’s a fellow Brit.
We want him to have a big match up again, another 100k+ crowd in this country. That would happen with an AJ win. We’d have pulled out all the stops to make sure he wins as well, that’s the difference. We’d have left no stone unturned, we’d have looked at eveything in detail.
It’s about getting AJ over the line so we can get that big fight on, a unification fight, here in the UK. Instead of flying around all over the globe.
I can’t go to America anyway, I don’t want to go there. I’m not bothered if I never go to the US. There’s that many problems with America now and the big crowds are here. The best boxers in the world right now are in the UK. The best boxing crowds are in the UK.
Why do we want to bounce about all over the globe and try to cry our eyes out in an attempt to get into the United States when there’s nothing really there? Only some good nights out. [laughs]
Another big fight coming in September, Canelo is facing Golovkin for a third time. How do you think that fight’s going to play out?
For me, Golovkin is an incredible fighter. He should be in the hall of fame. Unfortunately, I think Father Time’s caught up with him.
It’s a young man’s sport and I think Canelo is too strong. He’s learned a lot from the game, since he last boxed. I think he’s just too young, too strong and he’s learned too much for Golovkin.
If they’d have met each other 6 years ago, Golovkin would have knocked him out. Now he’s getting on, I think he’s a bit shock-worn now. Even though he got a good win last time, when he won that title and took all the stick. But my knowledge tells me that it’s time for Golovkin to call it a day. Before he gets permanent damage. He takes a lot of stick, doesn’t he.
Canelo is a young man, he’s got a lot of miles left on the clock and I just think he’s too good all round. But Golovkin is a warrior, he won’t go down without trying. For me, he’s a hall of famer fighter, a great fighter. I’m not knocking his achievements, he’s one of my favourite middleweights of all time. But I just think he’s given his best to the sport already and now it’s Canelo’s time. A young man’s game.