Whyte doubts Wilder will agree to deal for Joshua fight in April 2019
By Scott Gilfoid: Dillian Whyte thinks that WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder’s pride will get in the way of him accepting a deal to fight Anthony Joshua on April 13, 2019 at Wembley Stadium in London, England. Whyte thinks that Wilder could feel like he’s been messed about by Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn by him stringing Deontay along and then pulling the rug out from under the mega-fight and instead choosing to match AJ against former WBA champion Alexander Povetkin.
Wilder said his past week that he’s not interested in accepting the flat fees that Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Boxing is offering him. Wilder wants a 50-50 deal, not the $15 million flat fee for a fight that could make as much as $100 million. Sometimes it’s better for fighters to walk away, especially when the A-side promoter is offering table scraps instead of offering a full course meal for the B-side guy. If Wilder accepts the smaller deal, he could live to regret it because he’s not even being offered a purse split. He’s being given a flat fee offer, and that is a clear sign that he’s not being treated as an equal in the negotiations for the fight. If Joshua and his promoter Hearn were willing to give Wilder a 50-50 deal, then it would be a good deal for him, but the fact that he’s not even being offered a split at all, it shows you what they think of him. Wilder would be insane to agree to a flat fee.
Whyte, 29, has no sympathy for Wilder losing out on the fight against Joshua. Whyte is unhappy that Wilder never gave him a chance to fight challenge for his WBC title after he beat 39-year-old Lucas ‘Big Daddy’ Browne, Robert Helenius, Dave Allen, Ivica Bacurin, Malcolm Tann and Dereck Chisora. It’s not so much Wilder’s fault that Whyte wasn’t given a title shot against him. It’s more of the fault of the World Boxing Council, who were unimpressed with Whyte’s victories over that bunch of fighters. The WBC was more impressed with 2012 Olympic super heavyweight silver medalist Dominic Breazeale’s victories over Eric Molina and Izuagbe Ugonoh. Whyte’s win over Chisora was controversial in nature, so it’s understandable why the WBC chose not to make him the mandatory for Wilder.
“I don’t know,” Whyte said to skysports.com when asked if he thinks Wilder will agree to the deal offered to him for a unification fight against IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Joshua (21-0, 20 KOs) on April 13 at Wembley Stadium in London, England. “I think he feels he’s been mugged off a bit by Eddie Hearn and Joshua. Egos and stuff gets in the way and these fights don’t happen. It’s a massive fight, it’s a mega fight. Out of principle, he might say I’m not fighting this guy, because they messed me about.”
I absolutely agree with what Whyte is saying 100% about Wilder taking a stance of not agreeing to the offer for the Joshua fight out of principle. But what Whyte isn’t saying is that the $15M flat fee offer is far below what Wilder should be getting for the unification fight. When one guy is making $85 million and the other just $15 million, then obviously there’s going to be problems getting the fight made. It’s mind-boggling that Hearn would give Wilder such a paltry offer for the Joshua fight. All I can think of is that Hearn is so used to having his way in matching Joshua against fighters that cave in during the negotiation process for the lowball offers made to them, it appears that he’s now thinking that he can do the same thing with Deontay. It didn’t work this time, and it sounds like it won’t work in 2019 either. If Wilder sticks to his guns and is firm about only wanting a 50-50 deal, then Hearn is going to need to look to find someone else for Joshua to fight on April 13 at Wembley Stadium. Perhaps Hearn can put together a retread fight between Joshua and former WBO heavyweight champion Joseph Parker. I hope for Parker’s sake that they find a different referee that works the fight.
Whyte (23-1, 17 KOs) will be fighting Parker (24-1, 18 KOs) this month on July 28 on Sky Box Office at the O2 Arena in London, England. Parker, 26, is viewed as the underdog in the eyes of a lot of boxing fans despite the fact that he’s the more talented fighter of the two and the former world champion. Whyte is fighting at home, and that could count in terms of the scoring for the fight. If Parker is smart, he’ll be looking to knock Whyte down two to three times to make sure that he doesn’t wind up on the receiving end of a controversial decision.
Parker’s promoter David Higgins sees Whyte as a hot-head fighter, who loses his cool during his fights and takes chances that could get him in trouble against a big puncher like Parker on the night on July 28.
“Whyte is a guy that struggles to control his emotions and could fly into a rage quite easily. That isn’t going to help him in the ring, being hot-headed and having a tendency to take undue risks,” Higgins said to skysports.com.
Whyte does seem to get easily annoyed during his fights when he takes head shots. Instead of staying under control and using his boxing brain, Whyte generally bum rushes his opponents and looks to pay them back immediately with shots. You can also argue that Whyte seems to get a little hot under the collar during interviews when he’s asked certain questions. He’s quick to fire back with a blunt comment rather than holding back and staying level-headed. I think there’s a very good chance that Whyte’s inability to control his emotions against Parker is going to cause him lose a lot of rounds and eventually get put down on his backside.
Parker hits as hard as Joshua, and we saw what he did to Whyte in their fight in 2015 in stopping him in the 7th round. Whyte might have been able to survive the 12 round distance if he’s fought under control without losing his head, but he couldn’t do it. He kept bum rushing Joshua and he eventually paid the price for his risk-taking style of fighting by getting put down on his backside in the 7th round and stopped. Parker has a very good chance of knocking Whyte out as well. If he doesn’t stop Whyte, I see Parker winning an wide 12 round decision.