Joshua-Parker: Higgins meeting with Hearn to iron out details
By Tim Royner: Negotiations are still going on between IBF, WBA heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn and WBO champion Joseph Parker’s promoter David Higgins. The two promoters are meeting in London to try and iron out the final details for the unification fight, which could take place at the end of March in Cardiff, Wales.
Higgins will be meeting Hearn on Tuesday and Wednesday. If they can get the last issues agreed on, then Parker will fly over and meet with them to sign the contract for the fight.
It’s thought that Parker has agreed to a purse split between 30 and 35 percent of the revenue. Parker will get a 55-45 split of the purse if there’s a rematch if he wins.
“David Higgins landed this morning and we are meeting this afternoon to plough through the agreement and solve any outstanding issues,” Hearn said to skysports.com. “If we can do that then it’s likely Joseph Parker will jump on a plane towards the end of this week. Fingers crossed.”
Joshua will get the major portion of the revenue for the fight, and he’ll have the match taking place in the UK. The terms are obviously slanted in Joshua’s favor. The main thing that Parker has going for him is the WBO heavyweight title. That’s what Joshua wants. He wants to win the WBO belt and add it to his collection of titles. Without the belt, Parker would have a hard time getting a fight with Joshua.
Hearn hasn’t said what his backup plan is for Joshua if he fumbles the negotiations with Higgins. Hearn has Dillian Whyte and Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller he could substitute in place of Parker for the March 31 date. However, the boxing fans have already seen Joshua beat Whyte in 2015, and there’s not much interest in a second. Whyte has not looked good in his recent fights, so he would be a bad option.
Jarrell Miller would be a good option due to his verbal skills. He would get a lot of boxing fans excited about a fight between him and Joshua. Hearn obviously wants to build up the Joshua-Miller fight by waiting until Miller wins a few more fights and gains some exposure in the UK.
”We have both set aside quite a bit of time today, tomorrow to iron out the final details,” said Higgins to skysports.com.
The Joshua-Parker fight needs to get made. It’s not the greatest fight that can take place in the heavyweight division, but it’s one of the best. It’s the fight that Hearn and Joshua want right now. They didn’t take the fight with WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder, and for whatever reason, they didn’t make the match against Luis Ortiz when the option was there. They didn’t make the fight with David Haye, who has been interested in facing Joshua for well over 2 years. At least Parker is a fight that Hearn and Joshua do want.
Parker is going to be looking to KO Joshua when this fight takes place. Parker knows what he’s up against as the visiting fighter. He’s got to make sure he doesn’t let Joshua have any momentum. We saw premature stoppage in Joshua’s recent fight against Carlos Takam on October 28 last year in Cardiff, Wales. Parker can’t let Joshua get put his punches together in sustained combination form, because you never know if the referee might halt the fight. You can argue different parts of the world have standards for when fights should be stopped. In the UK there seems to be some quick stoppages at times depending on the referee. It can go both ways though. If Parker puts his shots together and wobbles Joshua, the referee might dutifully step and stop it under those circumstances as well.