Tyson Fury's trilogy bout with Deontay Wilder has meandered into view.
The heavyweights will meet just off the Strip in Las Vegas in a fight that was postponed in July. Fury and a number of his camp tested positive for Covid-19 just two weeks before the July 24 fight date.
It was a fight which many pundits claimed had not captured the imagination of the US public.
The rematch had come about after an arbitration case ruled Fury had to defend his WBC belt against Wilder. Heavy favourite Fury had lined up a two-fight deal with Anthony Joshua, but refused to pay Wilder to step aside.
The postponement led promoter Eddie Hearn to suggest that other, non-coronavirus factors had influenced the decision.
The Matchroom man claimed the fight was axed because of "disastrous" ticket sales.
"I just don't feel that a supposed megafight like that, and it's a big fight, just flicks the switch with seven or eight weeks to go and just says 'this is the day we're going'," Hearn told Dazn.
"They sold no tickets. Basically, you could go online and check.
"I don't know whether it was 25% or 30% of the tickets have been sold but that's disastrous.
"There was no hype. This was going to do very, very poor pay per view numbers."
Fury the man to beat
It's unclear whether sales have improved this time around, but Fury remains the man to beat.
After demolishing Wilder in February 2020, Fury looks primed to leave the Alabama native's career on the scrapheap.
Fury dominated his older opponent, knocking him down on numerous occasions before Wilder's corner threw the towel in midway through round seven.
And unless Fury has had his feet up on Morecambe beach for the last month, a similar outcome looks likely.
Fury though has looked as focused as ever. He returned to the gym for the first time since his Covid diagnosis on August 3. His camp for the fight was delayed by the birth of his sixth child, Athena, and her immediate admittance to the ICU.
But with the newborn fighting fit the 'Gypsy King' returned to the gym and announced he was "going offline" in preparation for "smashing the big dosser again".
Punch stats from Fury v Wilder II
Looking at the stats from fight two, Wilder looks up against it.
Fury dominated fight one, but the match was declared a controversial draw. However in the rematch Fury made no mistake.
The total punches count saw Fury outland Wilder 82-34, according to CompuBox. He also landed 58 power shots. Wilder was only able to hit Fury with 18 power shots in contrast.
Fury also won every punching percentage of the rematch.
In total, Fury landed 82 of his 267 total punches (31%) as well as 58 out of 160 power punches (36%). Wilder landed just 34 of 141 his total punches (24%), and 18 out of 55 power punches (33%).
The heavy loss had Wilder looking for answers and after a string of excuses he axed trainer Mark Breland.
Former opponent Malik Scott was appointed Wilder's new man and more recently Don House has been added to his training camp, alongside Jay Deas.
While Wilder has looked to blame everyone and everything for his defeat, he has also refused to accept he has learnt anything new under Scott. Instead he is hoping the new man can get more out of him.
His gameplan will remain the same though. Scott highlighted Fury's weaknesses and will look for his man to exploit them with his big right hand.
He told Sky Sports: "Fury fights with his hands down, at times with his chin up, at times he comes forwards, at times he is close with his hands down.
"He has been knocked down by guys who hit less hard than Deontay. He is very vulnerable."
Fury's viewpoint is that Wilder is a "one-trick pony" and he will use exactly the same tactics to dismantle him again.
It's unlikely Wilder's corner will throw the towel in this time after the abuse Breland received from Wilder. Instead it may well be the referee who has to step in during the second half of the fight to stop Fury beating up his smaller opponent.
When and where?
Saturday, October 9 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas; 20,000 capacity. Ring walks expected about 4am on Sunday, October 10.
How can I watch?
The trilogy clash will be another joint pay-per-view production in the United States between ESPN and Fox Sports. In the UK the fight will be exclusively live on BT Sport Box Office HD.
What's on the line?
The WBC and The Ring heavyweight titles.
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