Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder’s final press conference ahead of the heavyweight bout descended into chaos as they were involved in a heated on-stage clash.
Addressing the media for the final time before Saturday’s bout in Los Angeles, the pair exchanged insults as a melee broke out between their respective teams, with Fury removing his shirt before security stepped in to manage the situation.
The press conference began with each fighter making a speech but as it wore on, Fury elected to stand to answer questions.
While Wilder sat and listened to Fury speak about him, he shouted in his face as they posed for the cameras, sparking the melee.
“Deontay Wilder needed to do something so he started getting in my face,” Fury said afterwards. “I believe he wanted me to hit today so he could get out of the fight, or get me a massive fine. But I was not going to do that.
“It was a just a load of rubbish really. I’m quite disappointed that it had to come to that sort of stuff, those tactics, at such a high level.
“I apologise for the conduct on both of our parts because tempers were high and he does need to prove a point.”
As expected, both fighters vowed to knock the other out when they meet at Staples Center, with Fury taking the opportunity to remind Wilder of his defeat of Wladimir Klitschko exactly three years ago.
“It’s three years since I went to Düsseldorf and kicked Klitschko’s arse all over the place,” he said.
“I’m going to punch [Wilder’s] face in for him. I’ve heard a lot of people say ‘Wilder by knockout or Fury on points’, but I’m telling you now, Wilder’s going to get knocked out.”
Wilder responded by saying: “This is a moment I’ve been waiting for my entire career; this is my time. Fury had his – when he beat Klitschko that was his window to do whatever he had to do. How he took up his responsibilities as a champion was up to him. But now it’s my time. I’ve sat patiently, waiting.
“I will knock Tyson Fury out. They say I’m the puncher and he’s the boxer but the same thing was said when I beat [Bermane] Stiverne. I’m going to show you how well I can box. He will go down.”