Hearn says he’s had conversations for Ward-Bellew fight
By Scott Gilfoid: Eddie Hearn says he’s already started conversations for a fight between former cruiserweight champion Tony Bellew (30-2-1, 20 KOs) and Andre Ward (32-0, 16 KOs). Hearn says it’s a possibility that Bellew and Ward could face each other and seems very optimistic about it.
Bellew recently beat David Haye by a 5th round knockout in their long-awaited rematch on May 5 at the O2 Arena in London, England. Immediately after the fight, Bellew started popping off, saying he wants only the mega-stars, Andre Ward, Tyson Fury, Murat Gassiev and Oleksandr Usyk.
“Andre Ward, it has legs in that,” Hearn said to IFL TV, when asked if there’s a possibility for a fight between Andre Ward and Tony Bellew. “I have [spoken to Andre Ward’s people]. We’ll see. It’s got to be millions of pounds for Tony,” Hearn said.
Bellew needs a dance partner for his next fight. Ward would likely beat him soundly if that fight happened. The question is will be a viable fight in terms of the money it can make? Ward hasn’t fought in a year, as he’s been retired from boxing. Is he a big enough name in the UK for a fight between him and Bellew to make money?
It’s hard to believe that there are millions of pounds/dollars for Bellew to make in a fight against the 33-year-old Ward, because that’s not a fight that would sell in the United States. Bellew isn’t a big enough name to sell a fight between him and Ward on pay-per-view in the States. There’s no money in that fight from U.S boxing fans. If Bellew is going to make his millions for the Ward fight, it’s going to come from the UK side on Sky Box Office.
The problem with that is Ward is going to want to get his cut of the green stuff, and if Bellew plays the A-side game with him, it’s not going to work. If Hearn and Bellew start pointing out that they’re bringing in all the loot, I see the negotiations going badly from that point on.
What Bellew really needs is to wait for a year or two for Tyson Fury to finish taking all his soft tune-up fights, and then sign for a fight against him. Fury vs. Bellew will make a lot of money on Sky Box Office, and it’ll be a situation where both guys are bringing in the money.
Hearn and Bellew can’t say that the money is only coming from their side, which would be a deal-breaker if they tried to play the power trip against Ward. He’s not likely going to cringe and give in to Bellew asking for the lion’s share of the loot. That’s why it’s better for Bellew to save himself the aggravation if he’s not willing to give Ward at least a 50-50 deal.