Tyson Fury was already pointing to his next fight as he blasted out Deontay Wilder — and we didn’t even know it.
Close up shots of the heavyweight champion’s mouthguard in his rematch with the American in Las Vegas on Sunday have revealed a taunt to British rival Anthony Joshua, who many hope Fury will fight next.
Fury is hilarious. pic.twitter.com/iPXKAya7jM
The 31-year-old wore a green and white teeth protector with “Nigeria” scrawled across the front in a clear message to Joshua, whose parents were born in the African country.
Joshua, who regained three of the four heavyweight belts by winning his rematch against Andy Ruiz, noticed too.
⚔️ Anthony Joshua has posted his first reaction to Tyson Fury knocking out Deontay Wilder. He's put up these three images on Instagram – taking note of Fury's Nigeria mouthguard and branding them all: "Gladiator." pic.twitter.com/u7jWfRGyV7
Post-fight Fury was reluctant to have Joshua’s name mentioned on his big occasion and rubbished him for not making his own fight with Wilder when he had the opportunity.
“He could have been here tonight,” Fury told iFL TV. “But he didn’t. I took the chance. I came over here. I took over America and that’s it.”
But Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn wants a blockbuster all-British heavyweight unification fight with Fury this year after Fury battered Wilder to become a two-time world champion.
Fury brought Wilder’s five-year reign as WBC heavyweight champion to a halt in seven rounds in their rematch on Saturday.
Fourteen months after their dramatic split-decision draw, Fury dominated the American — who had blood dripping from his left ear and leaking from his mouth when referee Kenny Bayless called a halt as Wilder’s corner threw in the towel.
“The king has returned to the top of the throne,” said Fury, who had dropped Wilder in the third and fifth rounds as he remained unbeaten while handing Wilder the first defeat of his career.
The question is, what happens next? Will there be a Wilder-Fury part three or a historic all-British meeting with Joshua?
Tyson Fury knocks down Deontay Wilder in the fifth round. Al Bello/Getty ImagesSource:AFP
Fury and Hearn are both expecting Wilder, who has a rematch clause, to ask for a third fight but Hearn is impatient to stage “the biggest fight in the history of the sport”.
“No need for a third let’s go straight to it in the summer!” tweeted the promoter.
Joshua holds the WBA, IBF and WBO titles and Hearn believes the two camps now have a once-in-a-lifetime chance to make a unification fight happen.
“What a time for British boxing,” Hearn said on TalkSport radio. “To have one world heavyweight champion would be great but to have two with all the belts, we will never see it again.
“I have said and I will make this clear, we have to make this fight happen. We will never get the chance for two Brits to fight for an undisputed heavyweight world championship.
“I will promise you we will do everything we can to make this fight happen.”
Joshua had predicted a Fury win, saying pre-fight: “Fury can punch a bit. He’s underestimated with his punching power which makes him dangerous. If you underestimate someone it makes them dangerous because you don’t respect them until you get hit.”
And said the 30-year-old was eager to step into the ring with Fury and would not be daunted despite watching his demolition of Wilder.
“I have already spoken to AJ, he wants this fight,” added Hearn. “He has zero fear of fighting Tyson Fury and he wants to be undisputed.
“Every country in the world will try to get this fight — for me it should happen in the UK. First things first, let’s get the fight made.”
Fury was noncommittal. “The spoils of war have just happened,” he said. “Deontay needs time to recover but I’m almost sure he will take a rematch. I’m pretty sure we’ll do it again, if he wants to. If he doesn’t want to … Whoever’s next will get the same treatment.”
— with AP
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