- Unbeaten heavyweight boxer Tyson Fury appears to be larger than life.
- He likes dressing up in flamboyant costumes, singing karoake, and fights in a distinctive and defensive style.
- But those who know him say there's a completely different side to him.
- Away from reporters and TV cameras, he is quiet, shy, and a bit of an introvert, according to an Irish boxer who has met him a number of times over the years.
- Fury recently overcame a ghastly cut in his most recent bout, beating Otto Wallin on points. He is expected to return in February against the WBC champion Deontay Wilder.
- Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.
DUBLIN — Tyson Fury is quiet, shy, and a bit of an introvert, according to an Irish boxer who knows him well.
The middleweight contender Luke Keeler recently told Business Insider about the relationships he has formed in the sport, including his bond with Fury.
The unbeaten heavyweight, who recently overcame a ghastly cut to outpoint Otto Wallin in Las Vegas, is respected in Ireland's combat sports industry.
Though he won the British title, Fury has also won the Irish title, and his wife Paris Fury once said in the Irish Independent that "it's his Irish roots he is true to."
He's subserviant, bows his head, and is a polite guy.
Keeler boxed on the same show as Fury on August 18, 2018 in Belfast, before the heavyweight went on to challenge Deontay Wilder for the WBC heavyweight title.
Since that draw with Wilder, Fury has signed with Top Rank and ESPN, pretended to blow a kiss to his summer opponent Tom Schwarz at a weigh-in, dressed up as Apollo Creed, and donned a poncho while waving the Mexican flag before his win against Otto Wallin on Mexican Independence weekend.
Fury appears to be larger than life.
But away from the reporters and media cameras, there's a different side to him.
"He's … a bit of an introvert," Keeler told us from the Colosseum Gym in Kylemore, west of Dublin city center.
"He's subserviant, bows his head, and is a polite guy. Not a loud guy. We fought on the same show in Belfast once. At the weigh-in he shook hands, bowed his head, and was not loud at all. He's a really good guy."
After beating Wallin, Fury amped up his rematch campaign against Wilder, a box office bout tentatively scheduled for February, providing the American overcomes his next fight — a November 23 defense of his WBC title against Luis Ortiz.
"He's getting great exposure right now," Keeler, who returns to the ring in Glasgow on November 16, said. "It's amazing and everyone seems to get behind him."
'He's not a sane, normal person'
One of the reasons Fury has been getting "great exposure" is because of the story he has been telling which explains the reasons behind his three year absene from boxing.
Fury's mental health struggles in the aftermath of bamboozling Wladimir Klitschko in a stunning 2015 upset are well documented.
But one year before Fury wrested the heavyweight championship titles away from Klitschko's waist, his wife Paris Fury told the YouTube channel iFL TV that Fury is "one of them people … split personality, schizophrenic."
She said: "You got to see his nine personalities. He's not well, is he. Write him off and put him in a straight jacket. He's not a sane, normal person."
Once Fury returned to the sport in 2018, three years after he beat Klitschko, he frequently spoke about his mental health problems.
On the Joe Rogan Experience, he said at one point he was drinking 18 pints of beer a night, abusing cocaine, and once drove a Ferrari 190mph because he said he wanted to crush it "like a Coke can."
However, speaking to Business Insider in August, he appeared upbeat and is happy with the positivity he has been receiving around the world. "I've been loved no matter what country I go to," he said.
"People show me love so it's been a great return and journey. And who knows where it will end up."