Best Feuds for Boxing Star Tyson Fury's Potential WWE Return
Promoter Bob Arum recently expressed interest in renting out the WWE Performance Center for future boxing events.
The facility is already set up to work well without a live audience, and since WWE was declared an essential business by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, it may be the easiest means to get Tyson Fury vs. Deontay Wilder in a ring any time soon.
However, who's to say Fury won't first step back inside a wrestling ring instead?
That didn't come to pass, but there's always a chance Fury does come back to WWE in the near future. In that situation, who should he fight?
Here are a few suggestions of which WWE Superstars could make the best opponents for the two-time heavyweight world boxing champion in the squared circle.
Brock Lesnar or Drew McIntyre
While Fury had Brock Lesnar in his sights for WrestleMania, it was Drew McIntyre who won the WWE Championship instead. Following that, the new titleholder challenged the boxer in an interview with TalkSport.
In response, The Gypsy King posted a congratulatory message to McIntyre on Instagram, as well as an eager acceptance of his challenge.
Both options have merits and drawbacks worth discussing.
Fury vs. Lesnar is the more mainstream attraction, as a fight against the former UFC heavyweight champion would be one of the biggest cross-promotional sports events possible.
However, the WWE Championship comes with McIntyre, which is a draw in itself.
Ideally, WWE could capitalize on two fights with a common thread.
Fury vs. Lesnar could be a No. 1 Contender's match that the boxer wins and would set up a WWE title match with McIntyre, who could retain the title.
A win over Fury would make the Scot look monstrous and further legitimize his title reign in spectacular fashion.
Of course, WWE could always be tempted to put the belt on Fury. While it's always a little disappointing to see Superstars on the roster overlooked in favor of celebrity outsiders, it worked well for Ronda Rousey and might be worthwhile for The Gypsy King, too.
Baron Corbin has amassed a surprising amount of accolades in his career. The King of the Ring retired Kurt Angle and has won the United States Championship, the Money in the Bank briefcase and Andre the Giant Memorial Battle Royal.
But the most fitting reason why he'd be a great opponent for Fury is that he twice became Kansas-Missouri Golden Gloves regional champion prior to his wrestling career.
That is a solid foundation on which to build this feud. Corbin's ego and tendency to run his mouth should provide ample opportunities for him to gloat that he's better than Fury.
Then, it would be up to the Englishman to prove him wrong.
King Corbin vs. The Gypsy King—two talented athletes who have no problem making enemies with their outlandish personalities—is a match made in heaven.
If WWE could step away from the silly storylines it has given Bobby Lashley since his return two years ago, he would be a fantastic opponent for Fury.
The All Mighty is a stud athlete who looks and performs as he did 10 years ago, and the tale of the tape would match well with the boxer.
After an impressive amateur wrestling background, Lashley transitioned to sports entertainment and has won 13 championships across different federations, including two ECW World Championships, two intercontinental belts and the United States title.
In 2008, he stepped away from professional wrestling to pursue mixed martial arts, where his record is 15-2 with six of those wins coming via knockout.
The more Lashley flaunts his championships and MMA success, the more he'd come off as a believable challenger for Fury.
It could be a great feud to stay small while working toward more bigger matches down the line.
As "The Guy" in WWE for the past five years or so, Roman Reigns is always on the list of potential opponents for nearly everyone discussing fantasy matches.
For example, Edge recently said a match with The Big Dog has to happen now that he's back in the ring. The same would likely be the case for Fury.
Outside of Brock Lesnar or a part-timer such as John Cena, Reigns is arguably the top name WWE could deliver if the main interest is just name value alone.
Reigns vs. Fury would be too tempting for the company to pass up, even if there wouldn't be a reason for the two to fight. But it wouldn't be hard to set up a feud.
All it would take is a promo between Fury and Reigns arguing they're the best in their sports and wanting to challenge the other for supremacy.
In that scenario, The Big Dog should win, as WWE can't always put over outsiders to the detriment of its own roster.
While Samoa Joe doesn't have a history in boxing or MMA, his character is as intimidating as they come.
The Samoan Submission Machine is a perpetual badass with the size and power to realistically take down any opponent—even one as dominant as Fury.
Joe is also very outspoken and has had no problems picking fights with anyone on the main roster, which could provide a nice comparison to Fury.
Given Joe's spot on the roster as an upper-midcard act, Fury would undoubtedly beat him. While that result might be disappointing for his fans, even a loss in a marquee match is better than some of the other things he has done on the main roster.
Of course, a win over Fury would be a fantastic way to elevate Joe to the main event status he deserves, but that's a discussion for another time.
Last, but certainly not least, is the prospect of a rematch against Braun Strowman, who put out a challenge to Fury in February.
Their previous fight had a less-than-conclusive finish at Crown Jewel in October when Fury won by count-out. It might be good to capitalize on that and have the two settle the score in a No Disqualification match.
Now would be the best time for it, as it would have the added bonus of also having The Monster Among Men's Universal Championship on the line.
A win for Strowman would legitimize his title reign and status as champion far more than beating the majority of the SmackDown roster.
And Fox would also be happy with the mainstream coverage that would come with the top title on its show getting plenty of cross-promotional airtime.
Anthony Mango is the owner of the wrestling website Smark Out Moment and the host of the podcast show Smack Talk on YouTube, iTunes and Stitcher. You can follow him on Facebook and elsewhere for more.