Oleksandr Usyk has his sights set on the heavyweight division after making the cruiserweight category his own.
The 31-year-old became the undisputed cruiserweight champion in July 2018 and recently defended his belts against Tony Bellew. Now, it’s now time to step it up.
There is the possibility for Usyk, who signed to Eddie Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing, to feature in some major heavyweight contests in 2019.
"How many have gone from undisputed or unified cruiserweight champion to undisputed or unified heavyweight champion?,” Hearn told Sky Sports this week.
“Not many, so he would be on a very small list, but that's what he wants to do.
“He's focused to do it, and I see Usyk being in some major heavyweight fights in 2019."
Yet Usyk’s dreams of conquering the heavyweight division have been rubbished by Tyson Fury.
Fury thinks Usyk is too small
Speaking to iFL TV ahead of his fight against Deontay Wilder on Saturday night, Fury claimed that the Ukrainian is too small to succeed as a heavyweight and would get knocked out if he fought the Gypsy King, Wilder or Anthony Joshua.
“Usyk, he’s a good man for his size but he’s too small for the big men in the heavyweight division like me, Wilder and Joshua. We’ll all knock him out,” Fury said.
“He’s too small. 6 foot 3, 220 pounds. Too small.
“Usyk would do well against somebody stiff and heavy who can’t move because he’s a boxer but anyone who’s got a bit of athleticism and is tall would smash Usyk.”
Of course, Usyk would need to prove his worth against some lesser names before he could even consider a heavyweight title fight.
But Hearn insists there are several decent challengers available to him.
“You look at the opponents for Usyk at heavyweight - Jarrell Miller, Dillian Whyte, Derek Chisora, Adam Kownacki, Luis Ortiz,” Hearn added.
“There's so many fights for him at heavyweight that he could jump straight into.”
But in Fury’s opinion, he won’t be a match for the very best in the division.