Tyson Fury joked his way through a light-hearted showdown with Germany’s Tom Schwarz on Wednesday as the two heavyweights prepare to face off in Las Vegas this weekend.
British star Fury, who thrust himself back into the heavyweight reckoning with a thrilling draw against WBC champion Deontay Wilder last December, was all smiles as he wisecracked and laughed with heavy underdog Schwarz.
“We’re here to fight. Tom’s trained hard, I’ve trained hard,” said Fury.
“I’m really looking forward to getting in there and kicking some ass,” added Fury, who faces Schwarz at the MGM Grand on Saturday.
Fury (27-0-1, 19 KOs) is fighting for the first time since inking a lucrative deal with US broadcaster ESPN, worth a reported $103 million for five bouts.
The deal is expected to encompass a rematch with Wilder, who has already stated he plans to face Fury again in early 2020.
Fury meanwhile, barechested under a flamboyant suit, told reporters Wednesday he was revelling in the spotlight ahead of his Las Vegas debut.
“I’m very chilled,” Fury said. “The crowd has warmed to me, it’s been welcoming, and all different types of people from all over the world are in Vegas. I’ve been surprised really and it’s been humbling.
“It’s a great experience to be in the MGM Grand, Las Vegas, where all the big fights happen, seeing your face up on all the movie screens and posters.
“It’s what I was born to do. I believe the fight with Wilder only helped with my profile in the US.”
Schwarz meanwhile took a back seat, happy to joke along as Fury, the self-styled “Gypsy King”, held court.
Schwarz (24-0, 16 KO) is an overwhelming underdog but has spoken of his determination to pull off an upset that would rival Andy Ruiz Jr’s defeat of Anthony Joshua on June 1.
“A fight in Las Vegas against Tyson Fury is a dream come true,” he told ESPN. “While I appreciate Tyson as a great fighter and a sportsman, I am young, ambitious and in the top of the world rankings. I’ve won 24 fights. I’ve got nothing to lose, and my 25th victory will come against Fury.”