Boxing

Tyson Fury, Oleksandr Usyk go head-to-head, literally, ahead of Feb. 17 heavyweight unification fight

Tyson Fury, Oleksandr Usyk go head-to-head, literally, ahead of Feb. 17 heavyweight unification fight

Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk got into it at their news conference. (Photo by DANIEL LEAL/AFP via Getty Images)

The selling has started for the Tyson Fury-Oleksandr Usyk heavyweight unification fight.

Fury, the WBC heavyweight champ, and Usyk, the holder of the WBA, IBF and WBO titles, squared off at their first news conference Thursday, appearing alongside "Rocky" actor Sylvester Stallone in London for a fight that was confirmed to take place in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, on Feb. 17.

It didn't take long for things to get contentious, and then the event ended with a face-off that saw them butt heads, literally.

Fury, coming off a near-disaster against MMA champ-turned-boxer Francis Ngannou, was his usual provocative self, hurling insult after insult at Usyk. A quick sampling:

"You’ve beat all the rest of them but you haven’t met Tyson Fury yet, you sausage! Ugly little man. You know what’s coming, you’re getting smashed.”

"So there you are, [he was] crying around on the floor like a little b****, crying. That’s what he did, that’s what he’ll do again, Feb. 17, when he gets busted up, blood all over the ring. He’ll be crawling on his hands on the floor, like a little sausage.”

"When you sleep at night ugly man, you're going to think of me for the next eight weeks. Think of me, because I'm going to punch your face in."

"If you beat me in your dreams, you better wake up and apologize. I stole that from Ali, by the way, sorry."

"Get knocked out motherf***er. Out cold, sausage."

Usyk went for a more muted approach, once even welcoming Fury's insults.

Usyk is coming off a ninth-round KO of Daniel Dubois, which wasn't without controversy due to a questionable low blow call that gave Usyk four minutes of recovery time. Neither Fury nor Usyk are coming off their most impressive effort, but that won't lower the stakes for a unification bout in a division that has been screaming for one for years.

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