• UFC news

UFC officially challenges boxer Fury to Velasquez fight

ESPN staff
April 26, 2013
Velasquez destroyed Junior dos Santos in his last fight

UFC president Dana White has officially challenged outspoken British boxer Tyson Fury to fight the promotion's heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez.

The open invitation was announced by the UFC on Friday morning and comes after Fury's repeated outbursts on Twitter aimed at both Velasquez and British middleweight, Michael Bisping.

Fury, who won his US boxing debut last weekend, first called for the fight via social media in January.

"If the Klitchkos [won't] fight me then I'll go and fight the MMA heavyweight champ, at least he is game. Wouldn't last 2 rounds," Fury tweeted.

"I'm the new baddest man on the planet, I'll smash @cainmma. Let's get it on!"

Should Fury accept the challenge, Fury would almost certainly start as a heavy underdog against Velasquez, despite his severe height and reach advantage.

Fellow British heavyweight boxer David Haye previously said he'd 'bet the lot' that Fury would lose in an MMA bout.

Velasquez is an elite-level wrestler who can win a fight standing or on the ground, and previous examples of such match-ups have proven boxers cannot compete under such rules.

James Toney was easily dismantled by Randy Couture in the last such high profile bout, and Fury v Velasquez would be expected to go the same way.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.