With good looks, bundles of boxing ability and crossover appeal thanks to his stint on Love Island, Tommy Fury has all the potential to one day follow his big brother Tyson into boxing superstardom. That is, if he keeps his eyes on the prize.
This week the 21-year-old became embroiled in a war of words with YouTuber Jake Paul after Tyson mentioned Paul whilst praising his younger brother on social media, which quickly prompted Paul to fire back.
"He [Tyson] calls me out to fight someone - his brother! I didn't even know he had a brother,” Paul said on Instagram.
"You are Fury's little brother? If you want to do something don't let your brother do it for you."
Tommy Fury, who went 5-0 as a professional at the weekend, then hit back, "Mr Jake Paul, I don't need anybody to do my dirty work. I'll call you out right now myself.
"You can fight me any time, any place, anywhere. All you've got to do is get in touch."
It’s entertaining and an undoubtedly lucrative proposition for both men that is bound to gain interest, much like any of Jake or his brother Logan’s previous fights against fellow YouTubers or NBA journeymen, but, apart from the financial gain, it doesn’t seem like a smart move for Fury in the grand scheme of things - not yet, anyway.
Fury has remained unbeaten in the ring since turning pro at the tailend of 2018 but has drawn some criticism for his quality of opponent despite his relatively short time in the sport. The five men he has so far faced have lost 174 times and won just twelve, and while that’s not a shocker for a fighter at the beginning of their career, it does signify that Fury needs to focus on steadily improving his choice of opponents, rather than on a fight that will do little to improve his reputation. He needs to ask himself if he wants to be a world champion or a celebrity because at this point in his career, it’ll be hard to do both.
There’s also a question of whether the fight would be safe. Paul, who is currently training to fight MMA star Ben Askren, has fought twice as a professional, winning both, but those were fights against people who had no business stepping foot into a ring. Fury, an actual professional and the member of a bonafide fighting family, could pose some serious health problems for someone who’s full-time job is on YouTube.
2021 will be full of fights like this and expect the Paul brothers to be involved in ‘spats’ with everyone from Conor McGregor to Joe Exotic over the next 12 months. But, for now, Fury should focus on a potentially blockbuster future.