What happens AFTER Fury vs Usyk? Big questions answered as Anthony Joshua looms large

Tyson Fury vs Oleksandr Usyk is just days away as the headbutt heard around the world makes media headlines around the world.

These two great heavyweights were relegated to a sideshow on Monday in Riyadh as ‘Big John’ Fury claimed centre stage after he appeared to butt a member of Usyk’s entourage amid wild scenes during media arrivals.

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But on Saturday night the antics outside the ring will be forgotten and all we will have is Fury (34-0-1) and Usyk (21-0). But what happens after that?

The build-up to this historic night has been tumultuous – and it should give boxing a first undisputed heavyweight champion in 25 years.

But it also heralds what could be an incredible era for the division as that massive Saudi investment delivers superfight after superfight.

Fury vs Usyk, the big questions

Here is our take on what happens next, once the dust has settled in the desert.

What happens if Usyk wins?

No doubt in our mind here, an immediate rematch. Saudi General Entertainment Authority Turki Alalshikh has reportedly ALREADY pencilled in October 12 or 13 for a second fight which is CONTRACTED.

In this scenario Fury will be desperate to regain his titles, and keep alive the potential for that megamatch vs Anthony Joshua. That only carries maximum value IF he’s a world heavyweight champion.

What happens if Fury wins?

This one isn’t quite so clear-cut.

While Fury and Usyk are contracted for a rematch, should ‘The Gypsy King’ prevail on Saturday night the clamour for an immediate match vs Joshua will become deafening.

That long-awaited all-British blockbuster is clearly a fight Turki Alalshikh is desperate to deliver – and every fight until then carries the great risk of ruining the script.

READ MORE: The Moses Itauma story – the inside track on heavyweight sensation

So what about Fury vs Joshua next, before Usyk gets his rematch against the man from Morecambe? By no means certain, but do not rule it out.

Anthony Joshua Eddie Hearn Press Conference vs Francis Ngannou Heavyweight Boxing Riyadh Saudi Arabia
Anthony Joshua pictured with promoter Eddie Hearn at the press conference ahead of his heavyweight boxing fight vs Francis Ngannou in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia on March 8, 2024 (Photo – Round n Bout Media/Queensberry Promotions).

What happens if it’s a draw?

You would not be crazy in taking the 14/1 odds for a stalemate this weekend.

We have two brilliant technicians capable of cancelling the other out and providing a fight which is extremely close and difficult to score.

Remember there is history to draw on (no pun intended) as well. When Lennox Lewis and Evander Holyfield met at Madison Square Garden in 1999 in their first meeting, nobody expected a draw. Lewis appeared to have dominated proceedings to claim all the belts, but not so fast. The scorecards delivered a dreaded draw.

Eight months later in Las Vegas, Lewis would finally ascend the throne of undisputed heavyweight king, but boxing’s notoriously unpredictable scoring made him wait.

If we get the same scenario on Saturday night, it will be that immediate rematch.

Undisputed, but for how long?

Good question, and the answer is likely not very long at all.

Boxing has four widely accepted sanctioning bodies, and each has a title, a belt and a mandatory contender. It wants the champion to defend the title against the mandatory contender every so often.

As you can imagine – pretty difficult for one man to keep four sanctioning bodies happy for long. And therefore virtually impossible to stay undisputed for too long.

The first chip to fall here is expected to be the IBF title – and it could be within days of Saturday night’s showdown.

Reports suggest the winner of Saturday’s bout will vacate the bout pretty much immediately, and before June 1.

That would in theory leave IBF mandatory contender Filip Hrgovic and Britain’s Daniel Dubois free to fight for the vacant belt in that massive Eddie Hearn vs Frank Warren 5 on 5 card on June 1.

Filip Hrgovic vs Daniel Dubois Press Conference London April 2024 Boxing
Daniel Dubois and Filip Hrgovic face off at the press conference to announce their heavyweight bout on the June 1 Eddie Hearn vs Frank Warren card in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia (Photo – Mark Robinson, Matchroom Boxing).