Wilder vs. Fury targeted for Nov.10 or Nov.17 on Showtime PPV
By Jim Dower: Deontay Wilder’s manager Shelly Finkel is hopeful that he can put together a fight between him and former heavyweight champion Tyson Fury for November 10 or November 17 on Showtime pay-per-view. Contrary to what Fury said recently about the Fury-Wilder fight being done for December, the negotiations are still ongoing.
Wilder vs. Fury is one of the biggest fights that can be made in the heavyweight division. Perhaps the biggest is Joshua vs. Wilder. Although some boxing fans believe that Joshua vs. Fury is the biggest fight that can be made in the division, and the far easier fight to negotiate than Joshua-Wilder.
The reason why it’s an easier fight to be made is Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn views it as a bigger one for the UK fans, so he would be more willing to give Fury a better financial deal than he will with Wilder, who he’s only offering a $15 million flat fee for a fight that could make over $100 million.
It’s helpful that Fury and his promoter both want the fight against Wilder. They’re not dragging their feet or hurting the negotiations by not giving a date, venue and offering a flat fee for the fight like we saw with Anthony Joshua when his promoter attempted to negotiate a fight against Wilder. November is a good date for the Wilder vs. Fury fight, as it won’t conflict with Anthony Joshua’s fight against Alexander Povetkin on September 22 or the mega-fight between Saul Canelo Alvarez and Gennady ‘GGG’ Golovkin on September 15 on HBO PPV.
“I believe it will be done,” Finkel said to ESPN.com about the Wilder vs. Fury negotiations. ”I think we’re close. I would hope next week it comes together. It’s not done until all the paperwork is done. So do I think it will get done? Yes. But it’s not done. But I am also not aware of any issues. The rematch clause (still needs to be worked out. I think the fighter believes he can rise to the occasion,” Finkel said.
Fury is going to be up against it in facing Wilder with only two fights under his belt in the comeback. On a positive note, Fury won’t receive as much criticism losing to Wilder to his decision to take the fight with him in his third fight of his comeback.
Wilder had wanted to fight IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua (21-0, 20 KOs) in September, but the negotiations went nowhere for a variety of reasons. In the end, Joshua and his promoter Eddie Hearn felt it was more important for them to take the fight against WBA mandatory Alexander Povetkin on September 22. The rationale for taking the fight against the 38-year-old Russian Povetkin was because they didn’t want the World Boxing Association to strip Joshua of his WBA heavyweight title that he had won in beating Wladimir Klitschko last year. However, with Joshua’s popularity, he would easily get a fight against the eventual winner of the WBA title, as the top fighters in the division are all eager to face him due to the huge money they would receive. It’s believed by many that the true reason for Joshua facing Povetkin in September was for his promoter Eddie Hearn to use that fight as the kickoff for his DAZN deal to get American boxing fans to subscribe to the service in the States. Joshua vs. Wilder would be a pay-per-view bout in the States, and not a good fight for the first DAZN card.
This is a questionable move on Fury’s part to face Wilder in just his third fight back from a 2 ½ year layoff.
Fury beat Wladimir Klitschko by a 12 round unanimous decision in a big upset in 2015 to capture the IBF/IBO/WBA/WBO heavyweight titles. With the win, Fury’s life spun out of control at that point with a combination of mental health and drug and alcohol issues that kept him from ever defending his heavyweight titles.
Fury, 29, stated this week in an interview with BehindTheGloves that the fight with Wilder is pretty much done. As it turns out, the fight negotiations aren’t done yet, but they’re progressing.
It would be a mistake for Fury (26-0, 19 KOs) to overlook his fight this month against 2-time former heavyweight world title challenger Francesco Pianeta on August 18 at Windsor Park in Belfast, Northern Ireland. That’s a step up for Fury from his previous fight against Sefer Seferi on June 9. Fury’s fight against Pianeta will be on the undercard of interim WBO featherweight champion Carl Frampton vs. Luke Jackson. Fury should be headlining his own card, but he chose to fight on the Frampton-Jackson undercard instead.
The 6’9” Fury has been interested in setting up a fight against Wilder for two years, but he’s not been active in order to make the fight happen. In the two and a half years out of the ring, Fury frequently talked to Wilder on social media about wanting to face him once he returned to the ring to resume his pro career. Fury even showed up in person to get inside the ring with Wilder following his victory over Artur Szpilka in January 2016. At the time, a lot of boxing fans got excited about the prospects of Wilder facing Fury. Little did they know that Fury would be out of the ring until June of 2018 due to his difficulties being cleared to resume his pro career. Fury vs. Pianeta is scheduled for 10 rounds. It likely won’t go the distance due to Pianeta’s history of being knocked out. If Fury sits down on his shots, he’ll likely get Pianeta out of there quickly.
A win for Wilder over Fury will help setup a huge fight against Joshua for April 13 if Finkel is able to successfully negotiate it. Right now, it’s not looking very good that a fight between Wilder and Joshua can ever get made. As long as Hearn believes that Wilder isn’t deserving of a percentage split, the fight won’t get done. Hearn and Joshua will need to rethink their ideas of what Wilder brings to the table in a mega-fight before a match between them can get made.
Wilder almost lost his last fight against previously unbeaten Luis ‘King Kong’ Ortiz last March. Wilder stopped Ortiz in the 10th round, but he was hurt in round 7 of that contest.