Tyson Fury vs James Toney? | 11 Inches and 19 YearsWritten by Lee Cleveland
In April, FightSaga suggested Tyson Fury (19-0, 14 KO) vs James Toney (74-7-3, 45 KO) would be an intriguing matching up. And today, although discussions are seemingly in their infancy, both fighters appear receptive to facing one another.
The colorful pugilist known as "Lights Outs," who has been calling out the Klitschkos for years, issued a challenge to heavyweight prospect and contender Tyson Fury in a recent interview.
And according to World Boxing News (WBN) the 24 year old Brit would be happy to rumble with the 43 year old fight legend but believes James is well past his due date.
"James Toney was a very good fighter," Fury told World Boxing News.
"Although his last proper outing against Denis Lebedev (in November) spoke volumes of his chances against a man as me and I think he needed to retire ten years due."
"Seeing how he has got some sort of title then why not, let's fight! I'd be ready 100%. I didn't even know he had a title so let's get it on.
A future Hall of Famer, James Toney has held world titles in the middleweight, super middleweight, and cruiserweight divisions. He was named Fighter of the Year in 1991 and 2003 and is known for his legendary 'old-school' style, consisting of his shoulder roll (used to avoid punches), his ability to fight off the ropes, his slick body movements, and his infighting.
Last November, ring Legend James "Lights Out" Toney dropped a one sided, 12 round decision to the new interim WBA Cruiserweight Champion Denis Lebedev in Moscow, Russia. The aging defensive master struggled throughout the bout's entirety. However, James Toney insisted he badly tore his knee.
After the bout, Toney told The Pugilist KOrner's host Joseph Herron:
"At about the 1:45 mark of round 2, I tried to catch him with a lead right hand. When I tried to pivot off of my left foot to throw the punch, I felt a tear in my knee," proclaims the American ring legend. "Because of his southpaw style, Lebedev was unintentionally stepping on my foot and I couldn't turn and move properly. I definitely couldn't throw and land anything after I tore my knee."
In his most recent ring outing in April, a rehabilitated Toney showed flashes of brilliance, defending well with the shoulder roll and counter-punching effectively. However, Toney was popped a few times himself. And while ring rust was evident, Toney was able to land hard right hands and work behind successful sporadic jabs en route to stopping Bobby Gunn, who broke his hand, in Round 5.
Allegedly, Toney vs Gunn was sanctioned by something called the IBU, an organization that lacks relevance. So although Toney has a title, its irrelevant despite what he'll say.
Although Toney is well past his prime years (early 1990s) he's not without a lot of experience and "some speed" and "some skills," and, in shape, is still good enough to wallop a woefully ill-prepared top 20 heavyweight.
Never at a loss for words, the loquacious Toney would also likely be a big draw in a classic battle pitting an 'old school-style' grissled veteran against a young star... An an accomplished little man against a still-developing big man.
Their 19 year age difference may only pale in comparison to their monumental difference in size as the older man would be giving up nearly 11 inches (28 cm) in height to Fury.
Stylistically, Tyson Fury would match up well with Toney due to Tyson's massive advantages in height and reach and Toney's diminished reflexes and lack of one-punch knockout power. Nonetheless, Toney's ring savvy and technical skills could make Toney vs Fury a compelling match-up.
Toney travelled to Moscow last year to fight Denis Lebedev, proving the American will fight overseas if the money is right.
Having claimed the "B*tchko Sisters and David Gay" are ducking him, James Toney may get one more chance to redeem himself in a high-profile bout.
James Toney vs Tyson Fury... It's hard to see how Toney could win but, stylistically, it may be an intriguing affair.
Is Tyson Fury good enough to "dominate" Toney?
Lee is Managing Editor of FightSaga.com, a student of the Sweet Science and longtime boxing fan.
A gym rat in the 1990s, Lee was trained by 1976 Olympic Silver Medalist Charles Mooney and several retired seasoned pros. He was also a sparring partner for former WBA Super Middleweight Champion Steve Little who upset Michael Nunn for the WBA Super Middleweight Title in '94.
Lee created FightSaga.com to honor and preserve boxing's rich heritage, chronicle the achievements of top fighters, celebrate the legacy of big fights and provide a fun, educational experience for fight fans.