To beat Fury, Whyte really needs to be aggressive, says Otto Wallin
With the big fight between Tyson Fury and Dillian Whyte taking place this weekend, we caught up with Swedish heavyweight Otto Wallin who gave his views on Fury vs Whyte, potentially facing Anthony Joshua, Jake Paul and more.
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Tyson Fury is favoured to win the bout against Dillian Whyte and you have mentioned yourself that Whyte isn’t quick enough to beat Fury. Is there a way then, for Whyte to win? What strategy can he adopt to get the needed result?
“I think that anybody that steps in the ring always has a chance and (Dillian) Whyte is a strong guy and he punches pretty hard so a guy like that you can never underestimate.”
“He always has a chance, but to beat (Tyson) Fury he really needs to be aggressive and make it a fight, because he can’t win a boxing match against him when they are at a distance and Fury is out just jabbing and outboxing him the whole night.”
“So, he really needs to be aggressive and bring the fight to Fury, and I feel like he needs to target and hit the body a lot, cause that’s a big target. Fury has good upper body- and head movement and a good defence. So, he should hit the body. And then when Fury gets close, don’t let him tie you up and lean on you, cause that would tire you out and that was part of what he did with me.”
“I think that Whyte needs to be very aggressive and stay on him.”
Are we going to see an ultra-aggressive Whyte then? Is he comfortable with that?
“Yeah, he is. That’s normally his style. He is an aggressive guy.”
“I think what separates Fury from other opponents is that he’s taller than Whyte and he is big and heavy, but he has still good movement and good fast feet. And when we saw him (Fury) work out, he was light on his feet and was moving around. And he was sparring in a southpaw stance, cause he switches back and forth.”
“I feel like Whyte probably doesn’t know what he’s gonna do in the fight. Nobody knows. Probably Fury doesn’t even know what he’s gonna do. I think that Fury is just gonna come out and try to outbox him. And that’s also his best way cause he would eliminate all Whyte’s chances.”
“But, who knows with Fury. He knows how to come out and try to be aggressive. But if they stand toe-to-toe and slug it out, that is better for Whyte. It gives him more of a chance than if Fury just starts boxing.”
Are we going to see something different from them than what we have seen in the past?
“Yeah, because styles make fights. But at the same time, I think how the fight is gonna play out, is a lot up to Fury. I think that he could just outbox him and stay on the outside the whole night and probably win comfortably.”
“But he has a new trainer that he’s had for his two last Wilder fights, and he’s been much more aggressive with this new trainer. And this trainer, SugarHill (Steward), comes from Detroit, and he’s from the Kronk Gym, and they have a history of being very aggressive fighters and that’s their style.”
“Fury only tried that (being aggressive) with Wilder, and Wilder is much different from Whyte. Because Wilder, is tall and has very good power, but he doesn’t have the best defence. And Fury really figured him out, so it’s not a given that Fury could be so aggressive as with Wilder and knock him out.”
“It doesn’t mean that he can go and be aggressive with Whyte, because Whyte is different. He’s heavier, he fights better on the inside.”
How would the new Tyson Fury with his new aggressive style fit towards you then? You had good success against him in 2019
“In our fight, he came out boxing more the first six rounds, and then he was really badly cut, in the third round with me. So he had two cuts and that was really bad for him. Then the doctor came in and had a look at it, which is always nerve-wracking, because they can say ‘The fight is off, let’s call it off.’
“But, they let him continue and after the doctor had a look at the cut, he became really aggressive in our fight. So he actually fought with that aggressive style for the last six rounds in our fight. And at that time, it was pretty much what separated us.”
“I think personally now, I’m in a better place. It was a great experience for me to go twelve rounds with him. And I think I’ve gotten better since then, and I know some things that I would do differently if I fought him again.”
What things would that be?
“I can’t spoil it right now.”
What do you think about this Dillian Whyte Tyson Fury fight? Is it a real boxing fight or is it more to keep Tyson Fury in good fighting shape to fight Usyk later on, after the AJ fight maybe?
“It’s a big fight, and Dillian Whyte has been a mandatory challenger for this WBC belt for a really long time. So Fury had to take this fight. It was either take this fight or he had to release the belt.”
“I think he was a mandatory challenger for over a thousand days or something. But there was some controversy. He got knocked out one time with (Alexander) Povetkin and also he failed that drug test during that time.”
“I was obviously going to fight Whyte in October, and the WBC said the winner of your fight, me and Dillian Whyte, were going to fight Fury. Then he pulled out of our fight and they had to wait to get me out of the fight, and now he’s fighting Fury. But, no. He’s been the mandatory challenger, so Fury had to fight him if want (Oleksandr) Usyk."
Do you think we will see a Fury vs. Usyk fight at some point? And If that happens, how would you rate their fight in the grand scheme of things compared to the likes of Tyson and Holyfield and all those big fights in the past, historically?
“I hope that it happens because if Usyk beats Joshua again, everybody’s gonna want to see that fight. And I think Fury would want that fight also. You know, it’s a really big money fight and it’s a huge event, which would be great for boxing.”
“I just have a hard time seeing Usyk winning that fight, simply because of size. Usyk is a terrific boxer and he has great skills, but Fury is just so much bigger. Usyk is coming up from cruiserweight and is much smaller. He did really good with Joshua but Fury is a little bit different from him.”
“I would favour Fury to win that fight. But if Usyk could win and beat Fury, that would be really amazing. It would be historic. That would be really a historical moment for a cruiserweight to come up and beat Fury like that.”
There’s a lot of talk at the moment about you potentially facing Anthony Joshua next after their fight. But we still don’t have a date for that fight. How confident are you about you and Joshua going toe-to-toe at some point?
“I think that would be great. There were talks of me fighting him now if Usyk couldn’t do it. And that would have been great for me. It would have been a great opportunity for me, if I could beat Joshua, I would be pretty much on top of the world and I could fight Fury again.”
“But I fought him twice as an amateur. I lost on decisions both times, but it was very close fights. And then I sparred with him in 2016. We sparred a lot of rounds before he fought for his first world title. But, I’m hoping to get that fight at some point.”
What are your chances against AJ? Why do you think you have the advantage against him?
“I think that I’m a good boxer, I’m an intelligent boxer. Somewhat similar to Usyk and not the same of course, but similar. And I think that gives him problems”
“I feel he’s kinda on his way down almost. And I feel like he’s lost confidence in himself, and for me, I feel like I’m only getting better. I feel like I’m kind of a late bloomer in boxing. So I think that I’m just going up and honestly it seems like he is going down a little bit.”
If the Joshua fight doesn’t happen, who would you like to face next? Perhaps reschedule the cancelled fight against Whyte?
“Yeah, I would like to reschedule that fight, but I don’t think that Whyte wants that. That was pretty obvious with what happened and because they never talked about rescheduling it and we did, and he now has this fight with Fury.”
“I don’t know if that’s happening, but if he gets beaten against Fury, then maybe we can get it on later after that. Or, I think there are a lot of good fights out there for me I just have to stay active and keep improving.”
YouTuber turned boxer, Jake Paul hasn’t fought in 2022 yet. Would you take him on if he offers himself in a fight? What do you think about him as a boxer/his change in careers?
“(Laughing) Yeah, it seems to be paying a lot of money. So, yeah, I probably would. Honestly, I would have to talk to my team.”
“Anytime I get a question to fight somebody it is pretty much “Yes” every time, cause you know, I’m a fighter so I’d fight anybody. But it has to make sense, they bring in a lot of money seems like. I mean, he’s not on my level boxing-wise. He is a very good promoter.”
Does he seem to think so himself?
“I think he knows deep inside that he’s not really a great boxer. Right now, he could get better, for sure, but what he is, is a really good promoter. Honestly, it’s kinda impressive what they have done for themselves. You know, from limited talent. But still knocking some guys out and MMA fighters and that to get profile fights. But he’s not the real level boxing.”
It’s good for the sport though, right? He gets the sport to the people who normally wouldn’t watch boxing.
“I agree. I was never against them, I’ve never been against them. I said that they’ve done a good job and I think that if they can become, such big stars with very has limited boxing skills I think that it shows boxing that we need to do a better job in marketing ourselves, promoting ourselves, for sure.”
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Photo by Dan Burton
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