Tyson Fury vs Tom Schwarz: Expect smiles and laugher to disappear when first bell rings on Saturday night

There will be no magic wand, no vanishing cape of illusion and no tricky box to discard the body once Tyson Fury starts hitting Big Tom Schwarz here at the MGM late on Saturday night.

In the same property, as they say in Las Vegas, David Copperfield will possibly make an elephant or a London bus vanish during his triumphant act as part of his magic show. There will be multiple illusions in one arena and a lot of painful reality in an another, both attractions in the entertainment capital of the world; a heavyweight fighter will challenge the magician kings of the fabled strip for a new pound-for-pound title here in the desert.

It has been a long time since Mike Tyson was this city’s number one act, eclipsing any magician at the box office.

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By midnight – an hour so meaningless in this befuddled time-zone of dimmed lights – Fury will be back on the strip, dressed in his splendid suit of a thousand flat-nose faces, a heartfelt homage to the bare-knuckle fighters from boxing’s old days and Fury’s travelling culture. “Plenty of my relations are on here,” he said.

He will then take his genuine act to the people; they were promised a party and he will deliver after the nastiness of his encounter.


Every single one of Tyson Fury's professional fights





1/29 Every single one of Tyson Fury's professional fights

2/29 Béla Gyöngyösi, TKO (R1) 2:14

3/29 Marcel Zeller, TKO (R3) 2:50

4/29 Daniil Peretyatko, TKO (R2) 3:00

5/29 Lee Swaby, TKO (R4) 3:00

6/29 Matthew Ellis, KO (R1) 0:48

7/29 Scott Belshaw, TKO (R2) 0:52

8/29 Aleksandrs Selezens, TKO (R3) 0:48

9/29 John McDermott, PTS

10/29 Tomas Mrazek, PTS

11/29 Hans-Joerg Blasko, TKO (R1) 2:14

12/29 John McDermott, TKO (R9) 1:08

13/29 Rich Power, PTS

14/29 Zack Page, UD

15/29 Marcelo Luiz Nascimento, KO (R5) 2:48

16/29 Dereck Chisora, UD

17/29 Nicolai Firtha, TKO (R5) 2:19

18/29 Neven Pajkic, TKO (R3) 2:44

19/29 Martin Rogan, TKO (R5) 3:00

20/29 Vinny Maddalone, TKO (R5) 1:35

21/29 Kevin Johnson, UD

22/29 Steve Cunningham, KO (R7) 2:55

23/29 Joey Abell, TKO (R4) 1:48

24/29 Dereck Chisora, RTD (R10) 3:00

25/29 Christian Hammer, RTD (R8) 3:00

26/29 Wladimir Klitschko, UD

27/29 Sefer Seferi, RTD (R4) 3:00

28/29 Francesco Pianeta, UD

29/29 Deontay Wilder, SD

1/29 Every single one of Tyson Fury's professional fights

2/29 Béla Gyöngyösi, TKO (R1) 2:14

3/29 Marcel Zeller, TKO (R3) 2:50

4/29 Daniil Peretyatko, TKO (R2) 3:00

5/29 Lee Swaby, TKO (R4) 3:00

6/29 Matthew Ellis, KO (R1) 0:48

7/29 Scott Belshaw, TKO (R2) 0:52

8/29 Aleksandrs Selezens, TKO (R3) 0:48

9/29 John McDermott, PTS

10/29 Tomas Mrazek, PTS

11/29 Hans-Joerg Blasko, TKO (R1) 2:14

12/29 John McDermott, TKO (R9) 1:08

13/29 Rich Power, PTS

14/29 Zack Page, UD

15/29 Marcelo Luiz Nascimento, KO (R5) 2:48

16/29 Dereck Chisora, UD

17/29 Nicolai Firtha, TKO (R5) 2:19

18/29 Neven Pajkic, TKO (R3) 2:44

19/29 Martin Rogan, TKO (R5) 3:00

20/29 Vinny Maddalone, TKO (R5) 1:35

21/29 Kevin Johnson, UD

22/29 Steve Cunningham, KO (R7) 2:55

23/29 Joey Abell, TKO (R4) 1:48

24/29 Dereck Chisora, RTD (R10) 3:00

25/29 Christian Hammer, RTD (R8) 3:00

26/29 Wladimir Klitschko, UD

27/29 Sefer Seferi, RTD (R4) 3:00

28/29 Francesco Pianeta, UD

29/29 Deontay Wilder, SD

Schwarz will discover quickly that the fun and games and air kisses of a memorable week will end at the first bell. The amiable, unbeaten German has his own ambitions, enough talent to not be ruined in seconds and he will go down swinging. Schwarz, who has loved his moment of glory, will suddenly realise that Fury has been putting on a show all week, an act, a play, a brazen method to make him Fury’s glamorous assistant. The trickery will end with the first bell and Schwarz will be in a fight that his imagination could not have created.

Two weeks ago a simple trick went wrong in New York when Anthony Joshua lost his world titles to an underdog, Andy Ruiz; the ending left deep uncertainty in the division. “I wish I had been the one to beat him, take his unbeaten record,” admitted Fury. The loss does not impact on Fury’s plans – he was certainly not fighting Joshua anytime soon and even the majestic Copperfield would have struggled to pull that fight out of a hat. Fury, meanwhile, doubts Joshua can recover and that would be bad for business.

First, Fury must beat Schwarz in some style here on Saturday night to silence the doubters, the people questioning Schwarz’s selection and move closer to either a rematch with Deontay Wilder – the pair fought a draw last December – or a fight against somebody on the short, short list of much better heavyweights. There is no secret attached to Schwarz’s selection: he is unbeaten, young, hungry, available, not a severe danger and will play the perfect strong man in Fury’s win.

Schwarz told me that he will knock out Fury and I believe he believes it. It’s the business, the heavyweight business and Tom Schwarz is a desired breed of good loser. He should be applauded, just like Ruiz two weeks ago, for taking the fight and not hiding behind a transparent wall of greed and hesitancy, which is currently a severe ailment in the heavyweight division.

During the week here, as eggs were fried on car roofs and fans drifted bleary-eyed in from long-haul flights, Fury has once again talked with a brutal and vulnerable honesty about his darkest days, admitting that he lost six-stone before beating Wladimir Klitschko for the world title in 2015. “I had to lose ten-stone before the Wilder fight – this is the first fight where I have trained to fight and not to lose weight. This is how it will always be from now, I’m just starting,” said Fury. He might just be under more pressure here than in his two world title fights; the new deal with ESPN and Bob Arum in America is reportedly worth 100 million dollars.

It is obviously a kind figure, the best-case scenario total, and right now it sits off in the distance in a city with real mirages and it is separated from Fury’s fists by the promise of the damage his fists can actually do. Schwarz is in a dangerous place right now.

Once the bell sounds and 10,000 people refuse to sit, Fury will start to explore the possibilities of ending it quick. Schwarz has not looked fazed here, even when he joined Fury on stage for a duet at the conference and then they posed back-to-back like two beefy men in a bad pouting competition – Schwarz won, by the way. Schwarz will not freeze on the night, but that doesn’t protect him from Fury’s power and plan. Fury might have to persuade the referee or Schwarz’s cornermen that enough is enough, probably by about round eight.

And then the dancing shoes, the suit of honour and the shades will go on as Fury finally has his Las Vegas night out.

As Fury, still unbeaten and at 30 still young in heavyweight years, strolls out, he will leave behind some men, the game’s fixers like Arum and Frank Warren, Fury’s British promoter, a lawyer or and they will seek a quieter corner in this loud city to discuss the result and deliver one more fight this year. Wilder would be a magic trick too far by Christmas, but in many ways Fury – depressed, suicidal and 28-stone in 2017 – has pulled off the impossible by even being here. Now that was magic.

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