On 14th September 2019 Tyson Fury will take on Swedish fighter Otto Wallin at the MGM Grand in Vegas as he continues his journey towards a re-match with American fighter, Deontay Wilder.
This will be Fury’s second fight in Sin City, following his overwhelming second round demolition of German heavyweight boxer, Tom Schwarz, at the same venue on 15th June.
At that match, Fury did his best to ingratiate himself with the Vegas crowd by adopting a stars and stripes costume for his ring walk and his shorts. The razzamataz seemed to work and The Gypsy King is now being welcomed back for his second bout in less than 6 months.
Fury and his team have acknowledged the strong association between Vegas and the sport of boxing over the years, and if you are planning on travelling to Nevada to watch Fury take on Schwartz, you should too!
Don’t miss out on the opportunity to take in a wealth of boxing history, as well as some of the best gambling floors on the planet! To get you in the mood, here are three venues you MUST visit.
One of the most legendary boxing venues in Vegas, Caesar’s Palace sits on the west side of the strip, flexing its sizable muscles between the sumptuous grounds of the Mirage and the Belagio. Caesar’s Palace has hosted some of the biggest bouts of boxing in history, including George Foreman’s brutal five round clash with Ron Lyle which after a succession of bruising rounds for both fighters, ended with Foreman pummelling his opponent in the corner of the ring until referee Charley Roth stepped in to end the contest. Caesar’s Palace was also the scene of Sugar Ray Leonard’s epic victory over Thomas Hearns on 16th September 1981, and Steve Cruz’s narrow victory over Barry McGuigan in June 1986.
So if you’re heading out to Vegas in September to watch Fury live, or just soak up the atmosphere on fight night, Caesar’s is a must-visit.
The hotel has been around since the mid 60s and boasts typically gaudy faux-Roman architecture. And of course, if you fancy a bit of gambling whilst in Vegas, this is the place to do it – there is a 4,500-square-foot poker room operating 24/7, all types of table games, from blackjack and roulette to Baccarat, Pai Gow and Craps. If you’ve ever played slots online then you will also be interested to know that there are over 1000 to choose from at Caesars – with stakes from 1c to $500 per spin. It’s the easiest style of gambling in Sin City and after the boxing, some of the best fun you can have!
Another venue that is steeped in boxing history is the Las Vegas Hilton. It was here in 1993 that one of the more memorable Junior Flyweight contests took place between Michael Carbajal and Humberto Gonzalez.
It was the first of three occasions on which these two faced up to one another in one of the sport’s great rivalries. Carbajal was victorious on this occasion, landing a knock-out punch on his opponent’s chin in the last seconds of the seventh round, and in doing so becoming the first Junior Flyweight to scoop a $1 million payday in one fight.
The Hilton was also the venue for the 1990s ‘Fight of the Decade’ or ‘Thunder Meets Lightening’ clash when Julio Cesar Chavez fought Meldrick Taylor in March 1990. This was one of the all-time savage Vegas encounters, ending with Chavaz flooring his opponent in the final minute after a brutal series of rounds saw both men badly bruised and cut.
The Hilton is now known as the Westgate Las Vegas Resort and Casino. It was once the largest hotel in the world and still boasts a staggering 576 slot machines and 38 table games and 10 poker tables. Not quite on the scale of Caesar’s Palace, but still big nonetheless. Even if you don’t have time to stop and gamble, this is a great place to soak up some classic Vegas nightlife and conjure up some boxing memories as you wander the gambling floors and impressive outdoor spaces.
Boxing fans spending a few nights in Vegas may also like to visit the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino, the venue in February 2000 for the first of three clashes between legendary Mexican boxers, Erik Morales and Marco Antonio.
This was an epic Bantamweight encounter between two fighters at the peak of their powers. It was certainly the fight of the year, if not the decade, and was won on points in controversial style by Morales. Mandalay Bay was also the scene of a bad-tempered clash between Paulie Ayala and Johnny Tapia in June 1999. Before the fight even began there were skirmishes in the ring. Eventually Ayala won the match with a blow to Tapia, across the top of his head.
Like all the best Vegas hotels, the Mandalay Bay is worth visiting to experience it’s sheer gaudy opulence, even if you’re not staying here. It stretches out over 43 stories and if you’re into your gambling – slots or table games – there is a lot of fun to be had here too. Alongside Caeasar’s and the Hilton it’s one of the star attractions of the famous strip.
Of course there is plenty more to be enjoyed in Vegas, but for any boxing fan on a short trip to the capital of sin, these are our recommendations.