Wladimir Klitschko regularly deals with jokers (Shannon Briggs comes to mind). For the first time in his career, he encountered the Batman.
British heavyweight Tyson Fury appeared as the caped crusader on Wednesday at the London press conference to promote his October bout with Klitschko. On cue, the Batman theme music sounded and a man in a Joker suit appeared.
“This is a fool,” Fury informed the champion after conquering the Joker, “just like you are.”
That sounds like foolishness. Klitschko last lost more than a decade ago. And outside the ring, he boasts a sheepskin Ph.D. on his wall, Hayden Panettiere as a bride, and fluency in four languages. He spoke stoicism as his fifth dialect on Wednesday.
Still, Fury represents a more interesting challenge than the past sell-by-date tomato cans recently bolstering Klitschko’s ring resume. Fury sports a 24-0 record with notable wins over Dereck Chisora and Steve Cunningham and 18 knockouts. He possesses power. Klitschko, as Sam Peter, Lamon Brewster, and others proved, sports a weaker chin than his older brother. So, theoretically, Fury stands a puncher’s chance.
He also stands six-foot-nine. The mechanical jab Klitschko uses to punish and maintain distance may not work so well against the mouthy Brit. Dr. Steelhammer, for once, gives up three inches in height and four in reach.
The 39-years-young Ukrainian may find inspiration in Fury calling him an “old idiot” and an “old fool.” Or, he may find wisdom in the saying of an another old-school heavyweight, Bob Fitzsimmons: “The bigger they are the harder they fall.”