TYSON FURY vacated the Ring Magazine heavyweight title in a bid to emulate the late Muhammad Ali.
The Gypsy King gave up the prestigious belt – which Oleksandr Usyk and Anthony Joshua recently vied for – last month as he was toying with sticking to his retirement.
But the Brit's relinquishing of the strap was a premeditated bid to become follow in the footsteps of Ali and become a three-time holder of the title.
During a recent interview with SecondsOut, he said: “I gave that belt up, so that they could fight for it.
“Do you know why? Because I’m gonna become a three-time heavyweight Ring Magazine champion of the world.
“That’s how confident I am of battering Oleksandr Usyk.”
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Fury, 34, first won the Ring heavyweight title in his upset victory over Wladimir Klitschko in November 2015, in which he also claimed the WBA (Super), IBF, WBO and IBO belts.
He reclaimed the belt in February 2020 with a stunning seventh-round TKO victory over Deontay Wilder in Las Vegas.
Fury defended the belt twice, against Wilder and fellow Brit Dillian Whyte, before vacating it last month.
The Wythenshawe warrior will bid to reclaim the title from Usyk in their blockbuster undisputed showdown.
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December 17 was the working date for the Saudi showdown, although the fight looks set to take place early next year.
Fury, however, plans on fighting again later this year, telling BT Sport: “I will be fighting very soon. I don’t know who against, we are still looking for an opponent.
"I will fight in the next few months here in the UK. Usyk will not be ready, he does not want to fight. I will fight whoever is available.
“Whoever Frank Warren gets for me, that is who I will be defending my WBC belt against.”
Usyk wants to spend time with his loved ones in wartorn Ukraine and heal from his injuries before fighting Fury.
Fury said: "I saw a video from the middleweight who just beat the bodybuilder, saying he wants to fight me and he called me out after the fight.
“I replied straight away and did another one recently to say, ‘let’s fight’ but he doesn’t want to fight.
“He let his mouth go but now he’s running scared like the little b**** that he is, he says he wants to fight next year, he has some injuries from that sparring contest he had, so there is not a lot I can do about it.
“I would take the middleweight because it is the easiest fight out there for me.
“I am not greatly interested in being undisputed, never have been, never will be.
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"However if you have a pumped-up middleweight who people think is some great boxer – even though I don’t really rate him myself – then that is the money fight and the fight people want to see right now.
"I don’t want to say anything to him apart from ‘find your balls and come and see me, you s***house.’”
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