Kevin Barry slams absent Hughie Fury as Joseph Parker refocuses
Kevin Barry has taken a shot at no-show Hughie Fury, saying the British heavyweight "wouldn't have been able to hurt" Joseph Parker and would have produced an ugly performance for fans.
Fury pulled out of the WBO world heavyweight title fight scheduled for Auckland on May 6 at the weekend, citing a back injury. He has been replaced by the organisation's No 14 ranked fighter, Razvan Cojanu.
The bad blood between the Parker and Fury camps continues to spill.
Barry on Wednesday said he didn't want to talk about Fury. But he couldn't resist as the dimensions of the new fight came into play.
* Hughie Fury waits on new boxing licence
* Injury forces Fury out of Parker fight
* Fury camp hits back at Team Parker
* Parker takes big cut for rearranged fight
* Parker's friend suddenly his foe
Having had Cojanu in two training camps to use his height and power to prepare Parker for bigger opponents, Barry had no doubt that in terms of style, this would be a fight more pleasant on the eye.
"This is a much better fight, a far better fight. The last gentleman [Fury] wouldn't have been able to hurt Joe at all," Barry said, refusing to speak Fury's name.
"He would have run around the ring for 12 rounds it would have been a horrible fight for the public and a horrible fight for the fans. This is going to be an exciting fight.
"This guy [Cojanu] is a big, strong powerful guy. Our previous opponent [Fury] is not a big, strong powerful guy."
Barry acknowledged the "awkward" style Fury had, but that was about it in terms of positives for the absent Brit, who had somehow earned the WBO mandatory challenge despite a year's absence from the ring and having doping allegations hanging over him.
Styles make fights and several international observers looking at the Parker v Fury fight agreed that Fury lacked the power to really damage Parker and predicted he would use his movement and trademark clinching to try to slow the fight down.
Parker reiterated that the change had been an unwanted, but not unexpected development.
"Fury pulling out was stressful ... but we had a feeling that he would pull out," Parker said.
Barry's dismissal of Fury won't go unnoticed back in Britain where the Fury camp remain angry at accusations levelled at them. There remains a chance Parker and Fury may still have to tangle.
The Fury's are adamant their fighter is indeed injured, despite Kiwi suspicion, and they intend to press the WBO to have their mandatory challenge against Parker rescheduled.