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Tyson Fury lifts lid on ‘silly’ Andy Ruiz Jr negotiations

Fury is still without an opponent after his talks with Oleksandr Usyk collapsed in March

Alex Pattle
Combat Sports Correspondent
Thursday 18 May 2023 17:08 BST
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Tyson Fury has claimed that Andy Ruiz Jr wanted ‘$20million’ to fight the Briton, an alleged demand that led to the collapse of talks between the heavyweights.

Fury was on course to fight fellow champion Oleksandr Usyk in April, but negotiations fell through in March, leaving the “Gypsy King” without an opponent.

While Usyk is expected to defend the unified heavyweight titles against Daniel Dubois this summer, Fury has been linked with Ruiz Jr and Zhilei Zhang. However, neither fighter seems likely to box the WBC champion next.

“I’ve not fought since December, through no fault of my own,” said Fury, 34, in a social-media video on Thursday (18 May). “I’ve tried to fight that little midget Usyk, and he’s not wanting anything; I’ve tried to fight ‘AJ’ [Anthony Joshua], he don’t want no smoke.

“I’ve tried to fight everybody. Andy Ruiz has asked for $20m, silly little b*****d. I don’t know where he’s getting that from.”

In Fury’s most recent fight, the Briton retained the WBC title with a late knockout of compatriot Derek Chisora, taking Fury to 3-0 against the 39-year-old.

While Fury has suggested that Ruiz Jr’s monetary demands have scuppered that potential bout, the prospect of Fury vs Zhang fell through when Joe Joyce activated a rematch clause last week to box the Chinese fighter again. Zhang, 40, beat the Briton via TKO in April.

“Who’s out there? Who’s available?” Fury asked on Thursday. “Zhang, he was a good little fight, but Joyce wants his rematch, so that’s not happening now.

“I’m looking to fight anybody, any time, any place. I cannot wait to fight Usyk, AJ. Whoever’s out there, I’m f***ing you up.”

Ruiz Jr is a former unified heavyweight champion, having taken the titles from Joshua with a shock TKO win in June 2019. Six months later, Joshua outpointed the Mexican-American to regain the belts.

Fury (right) stopped Derek Chisora in Round 10 in December to stay unbeaten (Action Images via Reuters)

Fury continued: “I challenge Frank Warren [Fury’s promoter] to get me a fight in the northwest of England any time soon – July, August, whenever you’re ready, Frank; I’ll be ready.

“Let’s do it at a football stadium, not a problem. Get me an opponent, and I’m knocking him the f*** out, Frank. There you go, Frank Warren, make it happen, because the so-called big dogs don’t want no smoke until December, and I’m ready to fight now. Come on.

“Since I’ve been away from boxing, boxing’s gone to a load of s***. I’ve got to give everybody in the country something to look forward to – a proper event, because we haven’t had one since I last fought in December. Enough said.”

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