By Scott Gilfoid: Matchroom Sport promoter Eddie Hearn says that a fight was offered to unbeaten Hughie Fury (20-0, 10 KOs) for him to fight IBF heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua but his team would rather the fight take place in 2017. Hughie’s trainer/father Peter Fury recently expressed interest in making a fight between the young 21-year-old Hughie and Joshua.
It’s unclear what made him change his mind about taking that fight, because it’s hard to imagine anything changing a year from now. I mean, I can’t see the 6’6” Hughie doing better against Joshua in 2017 than he could now. Heck, I can’t even see Hughie doing well against Joshua five years from now.
We’ve heard all the blather about Hughie being a different fighter once he gains his man strength, but if he hasn’t gotten any power by 21, I don’t see it ever happening.
“Fight was offered. They would rather look at it next year, no issues,” said Hearn via twitter. “Just separating those who say they want it from those who actually want it. Anthony Joshua news coming soon.”
If I were Hearn, I would at least ask Hughie to earn the title shot against Joshua before letting him get a title shot. It’s not even interesting to see Hughie go from struggling against 36-year-old journeyman Fred Kassi into a title shot against Joshua. Hughie won that fight by a 7th round technical decision after he rammed heads with Kassi in the 6th and suffered a cut right eye. At the time that Hughie suffered the cut, he was taking punishment and was wearing down like an old clock. To say that Hughie had gassed out would be putting it lightly. He was totally exhausted from running around the ring all night long trying to avoid the heavy pot shots from Kassi. If Hughie had been able to stand his ground and actually fight, he probably wouldn’t have gotten so tired, but he was running for the hills from round one after getting nailed by a hard right hand from Kassi. It was such an awful fight to watch. Hughie running around the ring, scratching at the air with his weak punches, and Kassi belting him with head shots each time he would catch up to him.
“To all potential challengers… please don’t waste our time with fake hype! Serious applications only!!!” said Joshua on his Twitter about him wanting only serious challengers that are interested in fighting him.
Well, if Joshua and Hearn would focus on the talents like Joseph Parker, he wouldn’t have any issues with getting guys to fight him. But when you start looking at feather-fisted young fighters with inflated records, then yeah, you’re going to have problems. Joshua and Hearn just need to quit bellyaching and take the fight with Parker for November instead of yapping about how they’re not getting serious guys interested in fighting them. Believe me, the 6’4” Parker is dead serious about wanting to fight Joshua, and he’s ready to unseat him as the International Boxing Federation heavyweight strap holder.
There are several fighters in the running for Joshua’s next fight in November. Hearn is looking at possibly matching Joshua against Bermane Stiverne, Kubrat Pulev and Joseph Parker. It’s very likely that Stiverne will be the one that gets the fight against Joshua if the fight can be negotiated. That’s a big if thought because it might prove to be a very difficult fight to put together. Will Hearn be willing to stick it out with the negotiations or will he chose to go with Pulev, who is promoted by Sauerland. Stiverne hasn’t done a heck of a lot since losing to Deontay Wilder last year. Pulev at least recently beat Dereck Chisora by a 12 round decision, which isn’t saying much. Pulev would probably be the tougher fight than Stiverne right now. That might automatically disqualify him for a fight against Joshua unfortunately, because Hearn has been doing pretty soft with him. I mean, Joshua went after Charles Martin rather than Deontay for the title, and then defended it against fringe contender Dominic Breazeale instead of taking on a tough opponent like Pulev or Parker. What does that tell you? Breazeale was ranked near the bottom of the International Boxing Federation’s rankings, and he had recently won a highly controversial decision over Kassi last year.