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Tyson Fury stopped late replacement Joey Abell on Saturday night in London.
Tyson Fury returned to the ring on Saturday night in London, scoring a dramatic fourth-round knockout of late replacement Joey Abell.
But it wasn't easy, and the mammoth British heavyweight showed obvious signs of rust after not fighting for nearly 10 months.
Abell caught Fury cold in the first round with a series of massive lefts that had him reeling, but the Brit was able to rally in the second and floor his opponent twice.
Fury seized control from that point forward. He still ate more shots than necessary, but he was never in trouble again.
This result will have very little, if any, impact on the big picture of the heavyweight landscape, but it will hopefully lead to a more significant fight before year's end.
Dereck Chisora—who was left for dead after losing four of five bouts between 2011 and 2012—also continued his career resurrection on Saturday night, pounding out a clear unanimous-decision victory over former title challenger Kevin Johnson.
"Del Boy" suddenly has the look of a contender again, and with Fury in need of a significant win to jump from pretender to contender, this seems like a perfect match.
The two men have already met once in the ring—Fury took a unanimous decision when both men were undefeated in 2011—but circumstances have changed.
Chisora is fighting with renewed confidence in the ring and control outside of it, which we haven't seen from him in, well, his entire career. Fury, on the other hand, has been inactive and weighed in at a career-high 274 pounds for his bout against Abell.
It's true that Fury refused to remove his clothes in order to be weighed, but you can't help but feel like this feeds into a perception that he just isn't serious enough.
For a while, that was the exact knock on Chisora. But he seems to have righted the ship, and he’d be the perfect challenge to find out if Fury has as well.