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Fury vs. Joshua: Tyson will make decision on AJ fight in 2020 or later

Anthony Joshua Tyson Fury

By Jim Maltzman: Tyson Fury will be the one that ultimately makes the decision whether to fight Anthony Joshua in a unification contest when the time comes. Fury (30-0-1, 21 KOs) and Joshua still need to win their next fights before a possibility of those two battling it out in a unification match in December 2020 or later.

The way things are looking now, WBC heavyweight champion Fury and IBF/WBA/WBO champion Joshua (23-1, 21 KOs) won’t get a chance to fight each other until 2021 at the earliest.

Fury and Joshua need to make title defenses first

Not only do they need two win their next fights, but the coronavirus pandemic may impede their progress towards meeting up in a unification fight

Joshua defends against IBF mandatory Kubrat Pulev (28-1, 14 KOs) on June 20 in London, England. He needs to win that fight, and Fury must get passed former WBC champion Deontay Wilder (42-1-1, 41 KOs) in their still unscheduled trilogy fight, which might take place on July 18. Again, there still isn’t an official date yet for the Fury-Wilder III fight.

Tyson Fury took Deontay Wilder to school – Warren

“You look what he’s done in the last 18 months, Fury since he came back, it’s phenomenal. It’s the biggest comeback in any sport,” said Warren to secondsout on Fury’s comeback. “He’s come back and done it in style and proven to the world that he is the #1 heavyweight out there.

“He destroyed a guy [Deontay Wilder] who was considered the hardest punching heavyweight statistically of all time. Certainly the hardest punching heavyweight of my time in the last 30 or 40 years. He took him to school, out-boxed him and outfought him, and did what I thought he could do by stopping him and he done that.

“It was contractually bound to happen [Fury vs. Wilder trilogy], and we told everybody before the fight. All this stuff was being said, all this rubbish was going around. That’s what the position was. The same as it was with AJ. For him to keep his title, he’s got to fight Pulev, and that’s what he has to do,” Warren continued.

There is a contract or Fury and Wilder to fight in a trilogy match, and Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn will need to wait until that contest plays out. The good news for Joshua is Fury wants the fight with him, so it’s just a matter of both fighters winning their next matches.

What Fury accomplished since making his comeback to boxing two years ago is incredible. It’s on par with what former heavyweight champion George Foreman accomplished in coming back after being retired for 10 years, and then beating heavyweight champion Michael Moorer.

Anthony Joshua Tyson Fury

Fury will make a decision on Joshua fight

“Don’t know yet. A meeting has to take place and we’ll see what happens,” said Warren when asked if Fury will fight Wilder in July in the UK. “There were a lot of points made by Matchroom saying that they’ve been talking to Bob Arum. Eddie Hearn said he’s been talking to him and they’re close to doing a deal.

“Bob Arum and I did a press conference last week and Bob Arum said and I’ll use the words, ‘It’ ludicrous.’ It’s his words, not mine. It’s ludicrous. It’s not true. The only way this deal is going to happen is for all of us to get around the table, and that’s what we want to do. Whatever anyone else is saying, that’s the only way it’s going to happen. We want it to happen.

“It’s about these two fighters. And it’s not going to be from our perspective. It’s Tyson. We’re going to see if he wants to do it or not. It’s his decision, not mine. Not Bob Arum’s, not nobody’s. It’s Tyson Fury,” said Warren.

Wilder wants his third fight with Fury, and it might be a waste of time to try and convince him to step aside. Fury needs to decide if he wants to fight Joshua or not.

Fury vs. Joshua will go where it maximizes revenue

“I can think of all the great fights that have taken place over the years. Zaire, ‘The Rumble in the Jungle [Muhammad Ali vs. George Foreman],” said Warren. “Should that have been in Zaire or should that have been in the U.S? Was it a travesty that it ended up in Zaire?

“Looking back at it, no it wasn’t. It was part of boxing folklore, sporting folklore, ‘The Rumble in the Jungle.’ You think of ‘The Thrilla in Manilla.’ Two guys going there, two Americans [Muhammad Ali vs. Joe Frazier], not in their own country [United States]. Was that a travesty? No, it goes back to one of the great moments in sports.

“Boxing is one of the most dangerous of all sports, so they’ve got to get paid. If a country or a person wants to guarantee the money, then that’s something that everybody can consider and do. If the UK can make it happen, I’m sure all of us, Tyson, AJ, Matchroom, us, we’d all love it in the UK. But that’s if it maximizes the income it can generate,” said Warren.

Staging the Fury vs. Joshua mega-bout where it makes the most money is what makes sense. Unfortunately for UK boxing fans, that could mean that Fury and Joshua end up fighting in the Middle East.

Anthony Joshua Tyson Fury

Warren rates Fury’s win over Wilder as the best of his career

“Everything is in the negotiations, but the contractual position is, as I told you before, is BT has the last rights,” said Warren. “So whatever happens, it’s got to be down to BT. The people around have got to get around the table. If they don’t get around the table, it’s never going to happen. That’s the only way it can happen. It’s not for me to decide what the other side is doing.

“The best,” said Warren when asked where he ranks Fury’s victory over Wilder in terms of his biggest victories for one of his fighters. “The best elite fighters, and the two best heavyweights out there. Going into that fight, two undefeated heavyweights. What was he, six years as champion, Deontay Wilder? Hardley any of the press gave Tyson a chance going into that fight.

“They were going the other way. not only did he win that fight, but he did it in the best style and destroyed him. That to me, beating an elite fighter at his best, there’s nothing better.

“Joe Calzaghe did that with [Mikkel] Kessler when Kessler was at his best. That was another great fight. But when I look at the danger Deontay Wilder brought with that power he had, and Tyson comprehensibly took him apart. That’s the best,” said Warren.

Former super middleweight champion Joe Calzaghe’s win over Mikkel Kessler might have been a bigger one in some fans’ eyes because it was a bout between two highly skilled fighters. Kessler and Calzaghe were amazing fighters when they fought. In contrast, Wilder looked limited and untrained, and he was completely overmatched by Fury.

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