Tyson Fury is like “Muhammad Ali and Mike Tyson combined” both inside and outside of the ring, according to world light-heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev.
Fury has proved one of boxing’s most controversial and colourful characters over the past decade, producing a number of iconic soundbites since his professional debut in 2008.
He has also propelled himself to the summit of the heavyweight division, ending Wladimir Klitschko’s historic reign as champion in 2015 before tasting world glory for a second time by destroying Deontay Wilder earlier this year.
And Beterbiev, who currently holds the IBF and WBC light-heavyweight titles, believes the Gypsy King has qualities of both Ali and Tyson.
“I’ve known Tyson Fury since 2013. When I met him first time we had lunch. His brother, uncle were also with us,” he said.
“Last fight I watched in Las Vegas I said to myself that he’s like Muhammad Ali and Mike Tyson combined. He’s tall, has certain type of technique.
“And he also has a personality that reflects Ali’s personality. He has elements from both fighters – the physical and the personality.
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“Fury is like Ali in front of the media and people, but he also has a similar personality to Ali in private. He is often quiet and introverted.
“But make no mistake he is a promoter’s dream and an entertainer and loud.
“It will be interesting the rematch and we will have to see who wins.
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“Fury is with Bob Arum of course who has helped him to become an even bigger star now.”
When asked if he was ever influenced by Ali, Beterbiev said: “I didn’t know Muhammad Ali personally, but after maybe three or four years of boxing I heard about him. My two favourite boxers are Muhammad Ali and Mike Tyson.
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“But both of them are different in the sense they have a different style. Everything about them is different to each other. But I like these two boxers.
“Like I said, I actually didn’t know of Muhammad Ali and even Mike Tyson till about four or so years into my boxing. I was never influenced by them to take up the sport of boxing because of these two great fighters. But once I knew about them they became my favourite boxers.”
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