Fury: ‘I already beat Wilder. I’ll do the same to Joshua’
By Tim Royner: Tyson Fury has serious doubts about him ever facing Anthony Joshua in the future, since he thinks he and his management aren’t seriously interested in facing him. Fury (27-0-1, 19 KOs) says that Joshua and his promoter are going to say they want to fight him, but they’ll go in another direction each time to face someone else.
As far as Fury is concerned, he already defeated WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder (40-0-1, 39 KOs) last December in their fight in Los Angeles, California. The fight was scored a 12 round split draw, but Fury – and his boxing fans – still think he won. However, Fury’s promoter Frank Warren is looking to put a rematch together with Wilder for the first quarter of 2019 so that he can prove that he’s the better fighter in a more definitive way. The hardcore boxing fans my overwhelmingly see Fury as the winner of the Wilder fight last month on December 1, but the casual fans are going to go by the official result, which was a 12 round draw at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.
“I already beat Wilder, so that’s one down,” Tyson Fury said to BT Sport. “I’ll do the same to [Anthony] Joshua if I’m given the chance, but I don’t think it’s going to happen. I’m sorry to disappoint,” Fury continued.
It would be best for the 6’9″ Fury to focus on winning his rematch with Wilder before he starts talking about a fight with Joshua. If Fury loses to Wilder by a knockout, which is a very real possibility given how their previous fight ended, then he won’t be in the position to ask for anything from Joshua in the negotiations. Joshua could lowball Fury forever under that scenario, and there would be nothing that he could do about it other than to accept one of those deals.
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Fury may never get that chance to fight Joshua unless he’s willing to agree to the money offers given to him by Matchroom Boxing promoter Eddie Hearn, who has already shown in the recent past that he and AJ are willing to walk away from negotiations for a fight with Wilder after he wouldn’t agree to their flat fee offer. They also wouldn’t a huge $50 million offer from Wilder’s management. If Hearn and Joshua continue to negotiate in the same manner for future fights, then you would have to believe that the Joshua-Fury fight will never happen. Without Fury agreeing to the lowball offers made to him, he probably will never face Joshua. Fury wants 50% of the revenue for the Joshua fight, but that request is not going to pass the laugh test with Hearn and AJ. They don’t see any fighter in boxing that rates a 50-50 deal. The thing is, Joshua is so popular now, he doesn’t need to give his opponents anywhere close to an even split, because he’s an endless number of contenders that he can defend his IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight titles against, and enjoy a big purse split of between 80-20 to 67-33. When you’re enjoying that wide of a split, you don’t need to fight guys like Fury or Wilder, since giving those guys the money that they’re asking for wouldn’t make the fight as profitable for Joshua than it would be if he were an average run of the mill contender. Joshua can get the lion’s share of the profits against those type of fighters.
“Joshua, even with two hammers in each hand, would never beat Tyson Fury,” Fury said. I know it. They know it. They’re not silly.”
With the way Fury fought against Wilder, he would have a very good chance of beating Joshua if they ever fought. The size, arm length, movement and stamina of Fury would give Joshua fits. Joshua couldn’t beat Fury by standing on the outside and jabbing him for 12 rounds like he did in beating former World Boxing Organization champion Joseph Parker last March. Further, Joshua couldn’t get in close and hurt Fury with an uppercut like he did in his fight with Wladimir Klitschko in April 2017. Fury doesn’t fight in close often enough to be hit by an uppercut. If Joshua wanted to hit Fury with an uppercut, he would have to throw it from long range, and that would not be advisable for him to do.
If Joshua and Hearn are unwilling to pay the top fighters like Fury, Wilder and Dillian ‘The Body Snatcher’ Whyte what they’re asking for to fight him, then his career could wind up at a place where he’s only facing the less popular fighters in what would amount to be mismatches. Wilder, Fury and Whyte have shown that they’re unafraid to fight the best. Those three could wind up being involved in the best heavyweight match-ups in boxing. Of course, Hearn also promotes Whyte (25-1, 18 KOs), so there’s a possibility that he could miss out on all the top fights too if Eddie isn’t able to offer his opponents a fair deal. Hearn has been able to negotiate deals for Whyte to fight Dereck Chisora, Joseph Parker, Robert Helenius and Lucas Brown, but he couldn’t do it with Wilder. He wanted $7 million to fight Whyte, and Hearn’s offer was far less than that. If Hearn can’t negotiate deals for Joshua and Whyte, then it could be that the only two fighters that will be involved in the best fights is Wilder and Fury.
“This is a business, so they’re not going to take that fight,” Fury said about Joshua’s promoter Hearn. “They may say they’re going to take the fight, and talk about it, but they’ll fight somebody else like they keep doing,” Fury said.
The way things are looking, Joshua won’t fight Wilder, Fury, Luis Ortiz or even Whyte ever again. Whether Joshua and Hearn care that those fights might not ever get made is the big question. The British boxing fans don’t seem to mind that Joshua isn’t fighting Wilder, Fury, Whyte or Ortiz. They seem content to pay to see Joshua face guys like Carlos Takam, Parker, Alexander Povetkin and Eric Molina. Joshua’s pay-per-view sales on Sky Box Office haven’t been hurting, and he’s still bringing in massive amounts of boxing fans to see him fight in stadiums.
There’s a possibility that Hearn will eventually be able to make a deal for the Joshua vs. Whyte rematch, but it depends on how high he’s willing to go to pay him. Whyte maintains that he’s now a PPV fighter, so he deserves more than what Joshua’s normal challengers are getting to fight him. Just how much more Whyte wants to fight him is the important question. Hearn wants the Joshua vs. Whyte 2 fight, because it’ll make a lot of money in ticket sales at Wembley Stadium in London, UK, and on Sky Box Office PPV. However, it’s not just Hearn that is involved in the negotiations. Joshua has a say so as well, and if hes got his mind made up that Whyte doesn’t rate more than 30% of the cut, then that’s how things are going to be. Joshua has an ace in the hole with the 315 pound American Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller (23-0-1, 20 KOs) sitting on the sidelines, waiting to be called in to face him at a moments notice, be it in the UK or New York. Miller doesn’t care. He’s one of Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing USA stable fighters, and yet’s yet to taste the good money during his career. If Joshua doesn’t get the split that he wants from Deontay Wilder or Whyte for his April 13 fight, then he’ll face Miller in April or May.
Hearn seems to be more interested in matching Joshua against Wilder than he does Fury. Hearn wants Joshua to win Wilder’s WBC title, since that would help validate him with the boxing fans by showing that he’s the unified champion, and the best in the heavyweight division.