By Paul Magno | May 16, 2024

Every Thursday, right here at FightHype, I take time out of my busy schedule of producing hateful content to address readers’ questions and comments regarding the sport we all love (and sometimes love to hate). This week: Fury-Usyk, Tank-Lomachenko, and Forcing a fight on Canelo...

Fury vs. Usyk: A Chance to Change My Mind

Hey Magno.

This is your last chance to change your mind on that ridiculous Fury over Usyk prediction you’ve been making. You even went so far as to say that it was going to be a one-sided win. You’re going to lose all credibility when we find out on Saturday that you don’t know what the hell you’re talking about. I don’t see any path to victory for Tyson Fury, a slob of a man who was just barely able to beat Francis Ngannou in his last fight. Usyk will outclass him, outwork him, and make that fraud quit on his stool, if he doesn’t knock him out first. This is your last chance to re-think your awful prediction. 

– George

Hey George. 

What can I say? I’ve never been sold on Usyk as a heavyweight and, with the exception of his two points wins over a disinterested/unfocused/and stylistically mismatched Anthony Joshua, he hasn’t shown much-- other than a certain degree of fragility whenever an opponent actually lays hands on him. Usyk is a great fighter and has a lot of attributes that make him a tough out, but he’s wildly overrated by media and some fans who, I believe, are more enamored with the idea of someone like Usyk than with who he actually is. He’s an ATG at cruiserweight, I’ll give him that. I just think he’s very “mid” at heavyweight. He’ll be coming into Saturday’s unification bout with no clear path to victory. If he fights on the outside, Fury should jab his head off and neutralize everything else he has to offer. If he fights on the inside, Fury will smother him and grind him down with, maybe, a 40+ lb. mass advantage. The best Usyk can hope for is that he finds himself facing an unfocused, out of shape Fury who will give him space and drag a half-step behind. And that’s a real possibility. Fury is wildly inconsistent and he may just not show up, mentally, to this fight. That’s why I’m giving Usyk a 30% chance of winning. If both fighters show up at (or near) 100%, though, I will hold firm in saying that Fury will win this fight decisively. If I’m wrong, oh well. I’ll re-think my opinion of Usyk as a heavyweight.

Tank vs. Lomachenko


With Lomachenko beating Kambosos so easily, chatter has emerged about-- finally-- a Gervonta Davis-Vasiliy Lomachenko fight. What are the odds of this happening and who do you think wins? Is this a case of getting a fight years after it should’ve happened?

– Luis C.

Hey Luis.

Fans and media may be talking about it. Tank Davis may be talking about it. Lomachenko may be talking about it. But, unless Bob Arum and Top Rank are talking about it, this fight isn’t worth discussing. Davis and his team have gotten the majority of the blame and public ridicule for the fight not happening, but the reality is that Arum/Top Rank were just as instrumental (maybe even more so) in not making it happen. Hell, Arum has even talked about his unwillingness to make these cross-promotional fights that help build another company’s stars. And the Arum mindset of keeping potential passing-of-torch fights in-house could very well keep this fight from happening now or in the future, despite some comments recently made that indicate a willingness to make Tank-Loma next. I’ll believe Top Rank and Team Davis sitting down for serious negotiations when I see it. In the meantime, I wouldn’t get my hopes up.

If the fight DID happen? Tank knocks Lomachenko out. It would be an ugly KO, too. So, the money potential would have to be huge for Arum to cash out on Loma like that. 

The fight may have been closer 4 or 5 years ago, but I still think Davis would’ve won. In terms of timing, Tank-Loma makes perfect boxing sense right now. 

Forcing a Fight on Canelo

Hey Paul,

I know the WBC can’t force Canelo to fight Benavidez because frankly he is not obligated to sign a contract if he doesn’t want to. Just curious, is there any legal action that Benavidez can take against the WBC for not honoring his mandatory position? I mean the fighters are paying the governing bodies a fee. I’m sure it can get extremely tricky because of the different loopholes (Regular Champion, Super Champion, Champion in Recess) nonsense.  I get that this is boxing and you basically get what you get, but Damn! I’m all for today’s fighters having more control over their careers because historically no one has really looked out for them. But when you have guys that think they are bigger than the sport, it rubs fans the wrong way. Imagine if Patrick Mahomes said that he and the Chiefs have earned the right to play whoever they want in the Superbowl.

I guess at some point the fans will have a say. Based on what I have seen regarding the PPV numbers (500K) for Canelo-Munguia, the fans may have already spoken.

Then again, those are pretty good numbers by today’s standards.


--Reggie Cannon

Hey Reggie.

The problem when it comes to forcing a sanctioning body to do what’s right is that no fighter really wants to cross them-- because the belts DO matter. In the particular case of the WBC, it’s almost impossible to hold them to their word since, in their own bylaws, it pretty much says that all their rules are binding-- except when/if they decide otherwise. I’m not shitting you, look it up. But there IS a precedent for a fighter forcing the issue when it comes to demanding what’s right. Back in 2011-2012, Sergio Martinez was swindled out of his WBC middleweight title and named “Champion Emeritus” or “Diamond Champ” or whatever the hell they called it. WBC favorite son Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. was then pretty much gifted the WBC middleweight belt. Martinez was pretty much avoided and brushed to the side when he tried to get a Chavez fight for his belt. For the next year or so, Martinez doggedly pushed for his title shot with the second generation star and pretty much stalked WBC president at the time Jose Sulaiman until he became a nuisance. Martinez eventually got his shot and won back his title by beating Chavez. The Canelo-Benavidez case is different from Chavez-Martinez because of how much money Canelo brings to the WBC with sanctioning fees. Benavidez has gotten nowhere pleading his case for a (deserved) title shot and none of the sanctioning bodies will push Canelo to do anything he doesn’t want to do because, again, they don’t want to lose their 3% of Canelo’s $40 million+ purses. Canelo has shown himself to be spiteful in matters like this and, if you remember, he cut the WBC off for awhile when they got too aggressive in pushing for a Golovkin title fight. So, in short, Canelo can do whatever he wants, at least when it comes to the belts.

It sucks. I previously wrote this about Canelo’s “I’ve earned the right to fight whoever I want” attitude:

“...the whole idea of sports is wrapped up in the concept of competition.

“You won’t catch the Kansas City Chiefs saying, “We’ve won so many Super Bowls that, this year, we’ve decided we’re only going to play Division 3 college teams-- We’ve earned the right to decide who we play!

“...Sports is all about proving yourself. Watching skilled athletes prove themselves over and over again is what makes competition, competition. That’s why we watch sports. We’re not watching because we like to watch our favorite sports personalities get rich and play celebrity-- at least, I hope that’s not why some of us are watching.”

Ultimately, you’re right, though. The fans will decide with their consumer dollar. But I think the ship has sailed on Canelo. He’s got his fortune and will eventually drift off into the sunset a very wealthy and, ultimately, well-regarded Hall of Fame fighter-- with at least one very deserving challenge left unanswered. 

Got a question (or hate mail) for Magno’s Bulging Mail Sack? The best of the best gets included in the weekly mailbag segment right here at FightHype. Send your stuff here:

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