Tyson Fury vs. Anthony Joshua fight could be DELAYED
By Kenneth Friedman: The coronavirus pandemic could have a huge impact on a fight that fans want to see between heavyweight champions Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua in 2020. With the postponements of fights due to restrictions on mass gatherings, it’s going to make it all but impossible to stage the HUGE Fury vs. Joshua fight in 2020.
Boxing fans want to see Fury and Joshua battle it out this year, but it may not possible unless it’s held behind closed doors. The gate money will be gone, which could mean the undercards will need to be reduced, but the TV money will be there. It’s important that promoters be willing to make the fights happen without fans being present.
In the short term, it’s imperative that the promoters be flexible about staging their fight cards behind closed doors if possible. They need to get testing kits available to make sure the fighters that do participate in cards held behind closed doors are clean, and not in the position to spread their illness to the other fighters.
Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn said last week that the bigger fights involving guys like AJ, Dillian Whyte, and Oleksandr Usyk CAN’T be staged behind closed doors. He says those two fights are too big to be put in a studio. It’s got to be frustrating for a promoter like Hearn, considering that he’s been chomping at the bit for many years to stage a fight between Joshua and Fury.
Now that he’s in position to finally see that dream become a reality, a terrible disease has surfaced in the coronavirus that could keep that fight from happening. Hearn is under the impression that this is just a short-term thing, but history has already shown us that flu pandemics don’t disappear quickly. They can last a long time.
If Hearn continues to be resistant to having his biggest stars in his Matchroom Boxing stable fighting behind closed doors, there’s a good chance that those guys will be sitting on the shelf for a long period of time until the coronavirus disappears. The virus could stay around for a while, especially with all the traveling that is done between citizens of different countries.
The Center for Disease Control [CDC] has recommended that for the next eight weeks that large gatherings of people be either canceled or postponed in the U.S. Events that expect 50 or more people should be canceled or postponed, according to the CDC. That’s for the next two months until May. It’s quite possible that the CDC may choose to extend that recommendation if the coronavirus numbers are still spiking, as they are now.
“Yes, it just slows everyone down. You shouldn’t lose your opportunity,” said Johnny Nelson to skysports.com when asked if major fights like Joshua vs. Fury could wind up being postponed. “With the way it continues spreading and how severe it’s global impact has become in such a short period of time is alarming,” Nelson said.
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