By Allan Fox: Eddie Hearn sees an opportunity for Dillian Whyte to use his win over Alexander Povetkin last Saturday as a springboard to get a “colossal” stadium fight against Deontay Wilder in 2021, maybe in the summer.
It’s a big ask for Hearn to assume that Wilder would be interested in returning to the ring after a year and a half layoff to go straight into a stadium fight against Whyte.
We don’t know if Hearn was disingenuous about his call out of Wilder for the Whyte fight.
It could be the British promoter Hearn’s sole purpose of talking up a fight between Whyte and Wilder was to get the casual boxing fans in the U.S to pay attention to his fighter Dillian.
For many casual fans in the U.S, Whyte’s fight against the 41-year-old Povetkin (36-3-1, 25 KOs) last Saturday night went under their radar. It wasn’t a big enough fight to catch their attention.
One way for Hearn to get the attention of those fans was to mention Wilder’s name by talking up a fight between him and Dillian.
It’s a clever trick by Hearn, but it’s not going to be enough to turn Whyte into a household name in the United States. Hearn has got to do a lot more than name-drop if he wants to turn the 32-year-old Whyte into a star in the United States because he can’t do it on the cheap by clout-chasing.
Hearn didn’t elaborate on how he’ll go about enticing the former WBC heavyweight champion Wilder (42-1-1, 41 KOs) in taking the fight against Whyte (28-2, 19 KOs) because it would likely be a significant pay cut from his last two fights against Tyson Fury.
If Wilder were looking at boxing as a sport rather than a business, fighting Whyte would be the obvious choice for him. At this point, Wilder seems to be looking for the big money trilogy match against Fury.
As much as Hearn would like to see this fight become a reality this year, it’s doubtful that Wilder would agree to fight Whyte.
Deontay showed in the past that he wasn’t willing to face Whyte, so probable that he’s not going to change his mind now after his loss to Fury a year ago.
Like a lot of fighters that have made a bundle of money, Wilder’s main adversary right now inertia that is destroying his career.
It’s unclear whether the Alabama native will be able to return to the ring because he seems to be struggling at regaining the enthusiasm he had for the sport after his crushing seventh-round knockout loss to Fury in February 2020.
“We called for the Deontay Wilder fight for a long, long time and he actually DM’d Dillian Whyte and told him he would never give him that fight,” Hearn said.
“And now he got knocked out [by the Gypsy King Tyson Fury] he is calling for the fight with Dillian Whyte so for me that is a stadium fight, a colossal fight,” said Hearn.
If Wilder does come back, it will probably be against Andy Ruiz Jr if he can’t get the trilogy fight against Fury. Ruiz Jr is a big name in the U.S, and Wilder would make good money in a winnable fight for him.
Dillian did a good job in avenging his loss to Povetkin last Saturday at Gibraltar, but this wasn’t the same fighter that he fought a year ago. Povetkin looked depleted from his recent illness with COVID 19, and it’s pretty obvious he came back too soon from that.
Whyte isn’t back to where he was before his fifth-round knockout loss to Povetkin in August 2020. At that time, Whyte was the WBC mandatory, a position he’d been sitting on for a year.
With Whyte having recaptured the interim WBC heavyweight title and mandatory position, he’s starting all over again, and he’ll need to wait until 2022 at the earliest for him to get a title shot against the winner of the two Anthony Joshua vs. Tyson Fury fights.
“That was a lot of pressure, and I’d like to get him back out quickly in the summer and maybe go over to the States and have a big fight,” said Hearn.