Eddie Hearn And Bob Arum In Deep Negotiations For Anthony Joshua v Tyson Fury
In the aftermath of IBF/WBA ‘Super’/WBO Heavyweight world champion Anthony Joshua’s (24-1, 22 KOs) ninth-round stoppage win over IBF World Heavyweight mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev (28-2, 14 KOs) on December 12, the drumbeat has intensified for a fight between Joshua and Tyson Fury (30-1-1, 21 KOs), who holds the WBC Heavyweight strap.
Moments after Joshua’s win, Fury’s co-promoter, Bob Arum, let it be known that he will now begin the negotiation process for a match between the two.
During an exclusive interview with Sky Sports, Eddie Hearn on December 14, Matchroom Boxing CEO and promoter of Joshua has disclosed that talks between he and Arum are now underway.
“I had a good chat with him last night, it’s positive. I think we’re all in the same position. We want to move forward with the fight, quickly as well, which is good news for fans.
Just trying to solve any remaining issues of the fight, of which there aren’t many, to be honest with you, and try and move forward collectively to let the governing bodies know that we plan to stage this fight probably in May. And we would like this to be for the undisputed heavyweight championship of the world.
A few small issues to iron out, but I think we can start looking at drawing up contracts and try to get this moving.”
Hearn feels very positive that the fight can indeed take part and expressed that all parties are keenly interested in making a true super-fight.
“Sometimes when you try to put a big fight together, a fighter might not fancy it or a promoter might not fancy it.
Here on both sides, every member of each team wants to do this fight. We all acknowledge this is the biggest fight in boxing, this is the best fight for both guys. This is for the undisputed heavyweight championship of the world. Why are you in the sport if you don’t want this fight?”
POSSIBLE STUMBLING BLOCKS?
To be fair, in June, Joshua and Fury agreed in principle to a two-fight deal in 2021. However, serious negotiations could not take place as both men had mandatory obligations to take care of. Joshua fulfilled part of those obligations with his win over Pulev.
But he technically still has a mandatory defense against WBO #1 ranked heavyweight contender Oleksandr Usyk (18-0, 13 KOs). Also, according to WBO President Paco Valcercal, the sanctioning body fully intends to demand Joshua adhere to their rules. Will the WBO grant him that wish? That is still up in the air at this point.
Fury has impediments to resolve as well. He technically still has to deal with the issue of a trilogy with ex-WBC Heavyweight titleholder Deontay Wilder (42-1-1, 41 KOs). His team is currently in mediation with Wilder over the matter. Hearn believes those issues can be resolved, and negotiations will carry on. His next move is finding a locale to stage what would be the biggest event in the sport in years.
“Our plan, after speaking to Bob Arum last night, is to get the deal in place and then go out to the relevant sites. Obviously, we all would like this fight to take place in the UK. You’ve seen London go into Tier 3 now again.
There’s a lot of unknowns in that respect. Of course, there are many countries around the world who would want to stage this fight. It’s not just the biggest fight in boxing, but one of the biggest sporting events available in the world.
So we’ll talk to everyone. Then we’ll present it to the fighters and their team. Ultimately they will have to agree and then we’ll move forward.
But certainly one of the two, and we expect a two-fight deal here, will take place in the UK. It’s just a case of is that available in May, and where could we stage an event of this magnitude in that period.”
It looks as if everyone agrees that Joshua v Fury is a full go for 2021. Hearn is spot-on to say the fight would be huge not just for the sport, but for the sporting world because it would be an event that would draw major attention from the mainstream. Fight fans are crossing their fingers, hoping the fight will happen. Stay tuned to 3KingsBoxing for this developing story.
By: Michael Wilson Jr.