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Deontay Wilder’s next fight likely against Luis Ortiz

Deontay Wilder

By Barry Holbrook: Deontay Wilder’s next fight will be mapped out this week when his co-manager Shelly Finkel meets with DAZN USA Chairman John Skipper to decide which of these three – Tyson Fury, Anthony Joshua or Luis Ortiz – will be the guy that faces him later this year. However, the time constraints of Finkel wanting the decision to be made this week pretty much removes any chance of Wilder fighting Joshua or Fury. Those matches will take a lot of time to negotiate. They can’t be done in a week or likely even two weeks. Those are fights that could take months of negotiations.

Wilder and his promoters at Premier Boxing Champions have a three-fight plan that has him facing the following three fighters in this order:

Luis Ortiz

Adam Kownacki

Tyson Fury

The fight between Wilder and Ortiz will take place in the fall, according to Mike Coppinger. After that, Wilder will defend against Kownacki next Spring. There’s always the possibility for a mega-fight between Wilder and Anthony Joshua to take place at any point along the line if the match be negotiated.

“I’m in very close negotiations with John Skipper. I’m going to see him next week.I’m in constant touch with Top Rank [Tyson Fury’s promoters]. All of those fights are going to happen. Whether they happen next or two fights down the line, you will see all of them in the near future and they’ll be on terms that are acceptable to Deontay, not begged by Deontay,” Finkel said about fights between Wilder and Joshua.

A second fight between Wilder and Fury (27-0-1, 19 KOs) will have to wait until 2020. That’s not just because of what Wilder and his management wants. It’s also on Fury’s side with his promoters at Top Rank Boxing. They want to continue to slowly build his popularity in the United States before they put him in with Wilder for a rematch in order to maximize profits. Top Rank is paying the 30-year-old former IBF/WBA/WBO champion Fury a lot of money to fight for their promotional company. The only way that Top Rank can get a good return on their investments is if they can make Fury a big enough name in the U.S to where the American boxing fans will want to pay to see the Wilder-Fury fight in big numbers on both ESPN and Showtime pay-per-view.

The Wilder vs. Fury 2 rematch will be a shared network fight, so there won’t be as much money for ESPN to make as there would if they were the only ones putting on the fight. To make Fury more popular in America, Top Rank is matching him against Tom Schwarz on June 15 in a showcase fight at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada. Barring injury, Fury will be back out in September for his second fight with Top Rank. There’s no names yet being mentioned for the fight, but it’s expected to be someone beatable that will make Fury look good.

“Hearn says he understands that putting the fight off could increase the money for both fighters but added, “How greedy do you want to be?” Hearn says Joshua has told him: He is interested in no other fight but Wilder. More on Monday,” Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated said.

Hearn talking about greed is kind of interesting. If Hearn would back off his insistence of Joshua getting the larger purse split for the Wilder fight, then the Joshua-Wilder match would have a better chance of getting made. Is it greed that Hearn and Joshua want the bigger split against Wilder or ego? Whatever it is, they’re going to need to meet Wilder halfway if they want to get the fight made.

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