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Klitschko vs Fury breakdown: Fight preview for Wladimir Klitschko vs Tyson Fury

Time to break down Wladimir Klitschko vs. Tyson Fury. Who has the better skill set, and how will the fight play out? Let's take a look.

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This Saturday, HBO Boxing presents a much anticipated Heavyweight fight as undisputed Heavyweight king Wladimir Klitschko takes on the intriguing challenge of undefeated Tyson Fury. Bloody Elbow will have live fight coverage of Klitschko vs. Fury right here starting at 4:45 p.m. ET, and get full Klitschko vs. Fury coverage from Bad Left Hook here. Get ready for the fight with this fight preview, as we break down the skills of each fighter.

WLADIMIR KLITSCHKO (64-3; 53 KO) vs. TYSON FURY (24-0; 18 KO)


Though his reputation might not suggest it, Wladimir Klitschko has one of the deceptively strongest offensive games in all of boxing. It's an offense that is tricky in its apparent simplicity, based primarily on Klitschko's reach and strong fundamentals. With an 81" reach and a supreme ability to use that reach, some of Wladimir's best weapons are his piston-like jab and cross. Both are true power shots that can stun an opponent while also keeping them at bay. Once just a bit inside, Klitschko also has a great hook ready. These punches are nothing flashy - the jab, the cross, the hook - any year one boxing trainee can execute them. But the champion is tremendous at hitting them with maximum force and finding the holes to land them again and again. What makes Fury an interesting challenger is that he holds a reach advantage over Klitschko (85") - only the second man to ever do so. He's also a busy fighter, very good at using his own jab and power shots to overwhelm opponents. He is great at piling on the damage to his opponents, and brings a good offense game here, but he doesn't always show the concusive power Klitschko can throw out at times, so...

Advantage: Klitschko


If you are looking purely at results, it's hard to argue against Klitschko's defense. Consider this: in his last 13 fights, according to CompuBox, Klitschko has held his opponent to an average of just under 5 punches landed per round. That's rather remarkable. Of course, part of the issue with Klitschko is that much of this defense comes from clinching - not all of it, but more than enough. That does not make for a fun fight at times, and has the potential to cost Klitschko points for stalling. Is it a popular style? Not at all. But is it effective? I don't see how you could argue otherwise. Meanwhile, Fury has a bit of a suspect chin, with many pointing to his 2013 fight with the undersized Steve Cunningham - a fight where Fury was knocked down - as proof. Fury's offense often can shut down an opponent's own offensive game, but if that doesn't happen, he is indeed hittable.

Advantage: Klitschko


There's a reason Wladimir Klitschko has ruled the Heavyweight division for so long, and it's all in his boxing skill and the way he implements his game. That said, Fury represents a tougher challenge than we've seen for the champion lately, largely because of his size and his own offense. It's been over 10 years since Klitschko lost, but those many years ago, the theory was that if you poured on the offense and roughed him up, you could fluster and stop Klitschko. That's a game Fury is likely to try and play, which makes for an interesting fight. As for Klitschko, he could go one of two ways. Against Kubrat Pulev he was faced with an opponent trying to make it a brawl, and he turned in his most exciting effort in years. But there's also the very strong possibility that he sees the value in slowing Fury down and not letting the younger man outwork him. If that's the champ's plan (and I suspect it is), we've got a lot of clinching ahead of us.

Prediction: Wladimir Klitschko by decision