Who next for Tyson Fury? Whyte could jump queue ahead of Joshua and Usyk

WBC heavyweight champion Fury says he wants to bask in victory after defeating Wilder, but we all want to know who the Englishman will face next

With the dust settled on one of the most epic trilogies in boxing history, the question now is what, or rather who, next for Tyson Fury.

The 33-year-old Englishman had his hand raised for the second time in three fights against Deontay Wilder on Saturday in Las Vegas - after their opening draw - leaving the big-hitting American in a crumbled heap in the 11th round.

It was the third time Wilder had been down in the contest. All the more impressive was Fury's fortitude to climb off the canvas himself - twice in the fourth round - before securing the victory.

Fury, who improved his unbeaten record to 31 wins and one draw, proclaimed himself the "greatest heavyweight of my era" and that he would "beat any man in history".

While the latter is up for debate, the former is much harder to dispute. Fury was already the owner of the greatest performance by a foreign heavyweight on US soil following his seventh-round stoppage to claim the WBC title from Wilder in February 2020. His performance on Saturday night, emphatically answering any remaining doubts as to his ability and courage, topped it.

Fury was evasive about his plans in the post-fight news conference, refusing to say who he wanted to face next.

"Before I start thinking about other men I am going to bask in my victory," he said. His co-promoters Bob Arum and Frank Warren were also playing their cards close to their chests.

A fourth instalment with Wilder will hold little appeal, and there are plenty of options out there for Fury.

The one most fight fans (certainly most British ones at least) want to see is a showdown with long-time rival Anthony Joshua.

Joshua triggered a rematch with Oleksandr Usyk a day before Fury vs Wilder 3 after surrendering his WBO, WBA (Super) and IBF heavyweight titles to the Ukrainian in London last month.

Usyk systematically dismantled Joshua in the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, winning a unanimous decision to become only the third man in history to win titles at cruiserweight and heavyweight.

Joshua will need to make plenty of adjustments if he is to reclaim his belts for a second time when he meets Usyk again, but even without them a fight against Fury holds plenty of appeal, although with less money to be made as a non-unification bout.

"It'd be an ideal world for Anthony Joshua not to go for the rematch so we can just get straight to it," Warren said of a potential blockbuster bout against Britain's two best heavyweights.

But should Joshua bounce back to become a three-time world champion, a fight with Fury will be back on, the biggest showdown in British boxing history.

Another victory for Usyk over Joshua, however, would catapult him to the top of the pile. The 34-year-old showed he has the tools to take down much bigger men in boxing's blue ribband division, and a fight against Fury would, from a purists point of view, certainly be the most aesthetically appealing matchup.

With Usyk-Joshua locked in, the next opponent for Fury is most likely to be Dillian Whyte. The Brit faces Otto Wallin on October 30 at London's O2 Arena. Fury will be ordered by the WBC to fight the winner of that meeting straight away if a unification bout cannot be arranged.

Fury says he is open to a fight in the UK having not fought on home soil in three years. A fight against Whyte, therefore, would hold more appeal. The 'Gypsy King' overcame a pair of nasty cuts above his right eye and survived being rocked in a shaky final round to outpoint Wallin via unanimous decision in Las Vegas in 2019.

An outside shot could see Fury face Andy Ruiz Jr. The Mexican shocked the world when he dethroned Joshua in June 2019 with a seventh-round TKO of the previously unbeaten Englishman. He dropped the titles back to Joshua six months later.

Ruiz showed up for the rematch in Saudi Arabia looking like a man who had enjoyed his time in the spotlight a little too much. But he looked leaner and meaner in his comeback win against Chris Arreloa in May, and has also taken former heavyweight champion Tony Parker the distance. He is currently ranked sixth by the WBC.

Updated: October 11th 2021, 6:48 AM
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