Deontay Wilder and Oleksandr Usyk tipped to clash for undisputed world title
Former world heavyweight champion Shannon Briggs predicts Deontay Wilder and Oleksandr Usyk could compete for the undisputed title after beating Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua respectively.
Fury and Joshua were expected to face off for all four belts in Saudi Arabia this August before an arbitration panel ruled the Gypsy King must face Wilder for a third time.
Fury defeated Wilder in February last year to clinch the WBC strap and set up a proposed mega-fight with WBA, WBO and IBF champion Joshua.
But the arbitration panel's verdict means Fury will face his American rival for a third time in July at the Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas.
Joshua, meanwhile, has been ordered to face mandatory challenger Usyk by the WBO, with a British venue touted for the encounter.
Should Fury and Joshua emerge victorious from their respective fights, it is expected they could clash this winter for the undisputed title.
But Briggs – who won the WBO championship in 2006 – has warned it is more likely fans will see Wilder and Usyk compete for all four belts.
“Don’t sleep on Wilder,” Briggs told Sky Sports . “Throughout the history of the boxing world, he is a freak of nature. He could crack anybody and knock them out with his power. We don’t know what he will come with in this fight.
“He might shock the world. Fury might have the wrong idea. If this guy knocks out Fury, then what? It is possible. Will there be a fourth fight?
“Fury can’t sleep on Wilder. With those skinny legs he shouldn’t hot that hard. But he hits sickly hard. It isn’t normal to hit that hard. But he can’t fight backing up.”
Will Wilder and Usyk beat their British opponents? Have your say in the comments.
Briggs added: “The fight to get ready for is Usyk Vs. Wilder. We might have to get ready for that.
“Tough, tough, tough fight (for Joshua). A guy like that? Who can work like that? He is a king-sized Vasiliy Lomachenko.
“As the rounds go on, he gets stronger. The best chance for AJ is to catch him early. AJ is strong early, Usyk is strong late.
“This is AJ’s toughest fight – equally as tough as AJ versus Fury. If the ring is big, he [Usyk] will be hard to catch.”
Ukrainian Usyk has a professional record of 18 wins without loss and is a former undisputed cruiserweight champion. He made the step up to heavyweight in 2019 and has gone on to defeat Chazz Witherspoon and Brit Derek Chisora.
Wilder, meanwhile, has won 42 of his 44 fights, with a draw and a loss to Fury the only blemishes on his record. The Bronze Bomber has vowed to claim his vengeance against Fury during their clash in front of 40,000 fans this summer.
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