Sports

Tim Witherspoon thinks Anthony Joshua, Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder ‘wouldn’t even last’ if they fought in the Mike Tyson era


Modern boxing giants like Anthony Joshua, Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder wouldn’t have been able to handle the level of competition of previous eras, according to Tim Witherspoon.

Witherspoon is a two-time world heavyweight champion, having held the WBC title in 1984 and the WBA bracelet in 1986.

Witherspoon (right) pictured alongside Don King (centre) and Muhammad Ali (left), with whom he worked towards the end of his career
Getty Images – Getty

The Philadelphia heavyweight has faced some of the biggest names in the sport during his 24-year career, including Larry Holmes and Frank Bruno.

Speaking to SunSport, Witherspoon said: “A lot of boxers today, the fact is they wouldn’t even last if they were fighting in our time.

“There aren’t enough really tough heavyweights today at our level… The thing is, we’ve had a lot more better and tougher fights coming our way.”

Witherspoon, however, admitted that the financial and business side of boxing has seen drastic improvements since his days in the ring.

“I think the fans don’t get the fights that we did back then. We don’t see the skill these days, but they get more money.

Tim Witherspoon thinks Anthony Joshua, Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder 'wouldn't even last' if they fought in the Mike Tyson era
Witherspoon fought in an iconic era of heavyweight boxing occupied by Mike Tyson (left), Lennox Lewis (centre) and Evander Holyfield (right).
Mikey Williams / Front Row
Tim Witherspoon thinks Anthony Joshua, Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder 'wouldn't even last' if they fought in the Mike Tyson era
Fury beat Wilder in America to defend his title and complete a memorable trilogy
Sean Michael Ham / TGB

“They’re getting more money and the praise than we should have been getting. I’m not trying to take anything away from them, but I should have made a lot more money at the time fighting one of the greatest heavyweights of all time, Larry Holmes.

“Today is a lot of money, I would have liked to fight Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury who receive all these millions.”

As things stand, Fury is set to face Dillian Whyte at Wembley Stadium on April 23 in a clash for the British heavyweight world title, while Joshua will hope he gets a rematch with Oleksandr Usyk next.

As for Wilder, there has been little news regarding the ‘Bronze Bomber’ since his last loss to Fury and it remains unclear whether he will box again or opt to retire.

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