By Paul Magno | December 05, 2022


cheat or swindle (someone).
"that's salesmanship, you have to gyp people into buying stuff they don't like"

an act of cheating someone; a swindle.
"the deal turned out to be a total gyp"

Well, it’s not like we didn’t all expect Tyson Fury-Derek Chisora 3 to turn out like it did. Despite my best devil’s advocate efforts to introduce the possibility of a best case/worst case scenario upset, it was hard to make the case that Chisora had a meatball’s chance on a Dan Rafael lunch platter. 

In case you were busy doing more compelling things on a Saturday, like folding laundry or cleaning the lint trap from your dryer, the defending champ dominated the clearly hopeless challenger en route to a tenth-round mercy-driven referee stoppage. 

Just common sense told us that a less-actualized Fury scoring two decisive wins over a fresher, sharper Chisora years ago probably meant a prime Fury would manhandle a well-worn, very much post-prime Chisora. Duh, right?

Saturday’s WBC world heavyweight title fight at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium resembled a cruelly mismatched sparring session at times, where the star toyed with a lesser sparring partner, held back, but still couldn’t help bludgeoning the hapless pug in front of him. 

Even by boxing standards, Fury-Chisora was a really cynical pairing. Even the most hardcore of Fury fan boys could only muster a “hey, Tyson deserves a money fight” to justify the match. 

Broadcaster BT Sport Box Office chose to make it the highest-priced pay-per-view in UK history (tied with the bigger and much more important Anthony Joshua-Oleksandr Usyk 2 this past August) at £26.95 (just over $32 USD). It remains to be seen how well the show did with home buys, but fans sure did turn out in the cold to watch what everyone knew would be a farce of a contest. Even if the critics are correct in their assessments, about 40,000 fans turned out to support the world champ and his choice of opposition. 

That’s pretty damn impressive and proof positive of what I’ve been trying to cram into the brains of boxing “purists” for ages-- boxing is a star-driven sport where competitive challenge takes a back seat to star power and marketability. 

Now, if we see Fury-John McDermott 3 next, followed by Fury-Martin Rogan 2, we’ll see how that fan support holds up. But Fury was allowed a gimme by the loyal base, even if that gimme was a really big one. 

Both before and after Saturday’s bout, Chisora talked about his friendship with Fury and how grateful he was for his friend’s decision to give him this big pay day, which has been reported as anywhere between £2 million ($2.5 million USD) and £3.1 million ($3.8 million USD). Needless to say, I think many of us would similarly cherish a friendship with that kind of payoff, even if it meant a public ass-whipping at the hands of said friend. 

But, maybe, there should’ve been less of an emphasis on the friendship between the two. Maybe Fury should’ve talked less about his friend’s “big, juicy pay check” and how his near-retirement buddy will be walking off into the sunset “with an extra couple of million in his pocket.” Maybe the usually rude and rough Chisora should’ve been less humbly grateful for the payday in public. And, maybe, it would’ve been a good idea NOT to have a post-fight locker room burger party with the two fighters gorging on Five Guys and laughing it up like a pair of old bank robber pals who managed to pull off one last heist. 

There IS a certain honor in being a hustler. It’s just not cool to rub the mark’s nose in the hustle after the money score. 

In boxing, however, everything comes with a “caveat emptor’ warning label. There’s little room for sympathy when it comes to fans being hustled. Boxing fans, who live in a world built upon a foundation of bait-and-switch, corruption, and flat-out lies, should be street-smart when it comes to con men and hustles. Those who get swindled are either too stupid to know better or simply don’t mind being swindled.

It’s understandable why some would occasionally fall into the latter group. It might be worth the price of a ticket to see Tyson Fury live, no matter who he’s fighting. It might be worth a pay-per-view buy if you’re looking for something to fill up a boring Saturday. 

That’s fine. Just don’t complain when we keep getting junk content after junk proves to be a low-risk/high-reward alternative to real, competitive boxing contests. 

But, as I tell everyone-- if you object to a particular pay-per-view, it’s content and/or its price, you don’t have to buy it. Move on to something that IS worth the price to you. Just be aware that, given the business environment of the current boxing scene, what you deem worthy is probably also someone’s hustle. 

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