Deontay Wilder “can’t wait” for Anthony Joshua fight
By Tim Royner: Deontay Wilder (40-0-1, 39 KOs) is chomping at the bit to get a fight against Anthony Joshua after he defends his WBC title against Dominic Breazeale (20-1, 18 KOs) on May 18. Wilder is in the process of signing a three-fight deal with Showtime Boxing that is expected to pay him more than the $120 million three-fight offer given to him recently by DAZN.
Wilder is still willing to try and do the hard work of negotiating the fight with Joshua, but he wonders whether the British heavyweight and his promoter Eddie Hearn truly wants the fight. It made big news last year when Joshua reportedly turned down a huge $50 million offer to fight Wilder. At the time, that seemed surprising that Joshua would turn down that kind of money, but the fight has gotten bigger and it bring both fighters more than $50 million each, as long as the purse split is a fair one down the middle.
“Oh man, I can’t wait for him either,” Wilder said to skysports.com about him wanting to fight Joshua if possible. “I feel the same way about him (that I do Breazeale). Four months of negotiations and they knew they didn’t want the fight. Stop. What more do I have to do for people?”
Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn says he wants to make the fight with Wilder in November or December. As long as Hearn is serious and willing to agree to Wilder’s asking price, it shouldn’t be a problem to make the Joshua-Wilder fight for later this year.
Wilder is fed up with trying to get a fight with Joshua and his promoters at Matchroom Boxing, who he feels have been giving him the runaround for ages now, and aren’t serious about wanting to make the fight with him. Wilder wants to fight Joshua in a unification fight, but he’s been hitting his head against a brick wall in trying to make the fight happen.
Joshua (22-0, 21 KOs) will be defending his IBF/WBA/WBO titles on June 1 against unbeaten American Jarrell ‘Big Baby’ Miller (23-0-1, 20 KOs) at Madison Square Garden in New York.
Wilder says about himself that he’s “the man, the myth and the legend.”
Had Wilder signed the big 3-fight deal with DAZN, it would have made it easier for the Joshua fight to take place. That fight was presumably part of the deal that DAZN was offering to Wilder, and it would be built in. Wilder was also offered a deal to sign with Top Rank Boxing, which would have setup a rematch between him and Tyson Fury, who he fought last December in a contest that ended in a 12 round draw. The World Boxing Council even ordered Wilder and Fury to face each other. However, Fury then signed with Top Rank, who decided to let the Wilder rematch marinate by having both of them take interim fights. The rematch is now dead in the water, and it’s unclear if they’ll ever face each other again due to them being with different management/promoters, who rarely work with one another. Wilder is with Premier Boxing Champions. Wilder wanted to fight the rematch with Fury on May 18, but that is no longer happening. Fury singing with Top Rank has resulted in the Wilder rematch being shelved for now. Wilder will be defending his WBC title against his mandatory Dominic Breazeale (20-1, 18 KOs) next on May 18, while Fury will be fighting in June against a still to be determined opponent.
Wilder’s new 3-fight deal he’s working on with Showtime Boxing will give him the freedom to fight on DAZN or ESPN, if need be, against Joshua and Fury if those fights can get made. Wilder’s co-manager Shelly Finkel told ESPN on Tuesday that his new deal will give him the option to fight on DAZN and ESPN to get the big fights made.