Bob Arum predicts Fury vs. Wilder 3 does one million pay-per-view buys

By Boxing News - 08/01/2021 - Comments

By William Lloyd: Tyson Fury’s promoter Bob Arum predicts HUGE pay-per-view numbers for the trilogy match with Deontay Wilder on October 9th, believing it’ll bring in OVER one million PPV buys.

What Arum is up against with the trilogy fight is the ambivalence boxing fans have towards the Fury vs. Wilder III clash.

Part of the reason is that they saw Fury recently lose his arbitration case with Deontay when he was trying to walk away from their contractual rematch.

Then there’s the belief that many boxing fans have that Fury faked his recent illness with COVID-19 to get more training time.

The other reason fans have a lack of interest in the Fury-Wilder 3 fight is because they see Wilder as having zero chance of winning.

He was so badly dominated the last time he fought Fury; it makes it impossible to see him getting the victory on October 9th. As such, U.S fans aren’t going to throw away $70 on PPV to see the British heavyweight Fury knockout Wilder again.

Arum says Fury vs. Wilder 3 does 1M PPV buys

“I think better than the second fight on pay-per-view, and the reason I say that is Tyson [Fury] has become huge in the United States,” said Arum to iFL TV. “People of all ethnic groups really get a kick out of him, and he’s a lot better known now than when we did the second fight.

Image: Bob Arum predicts Fury vs. Wilder 3 does one million pay-per-view buys

“We did like 850,000 pay-per-view buys in the second fight, and I really believe we’re going to go over one million buys for this fight,” Arum said of the Fury vs. Wilder III trilogy.

“First of all, you don’t take anything Wilder says at face value,” said Arum when told that Wilder is predicting this will be an “easy” fight for him against Fury.

“Wilder as a boxer is equivalent of Eddie Hearn as a promoter. Wilder as a fighter isn’t as technically near as good as Tyson Fury.

“The problem with Wilder is he’s like a little guy that comes into a bar, and there are big bruisers at the bar, tough guys, and he insults one of them.

“It looks like a fair fight, but he’s got a gun in his pocket, and he uses the pistol with damning effect. That’s Wilder. Wilder is not one of our great heavyweight technicians of all time.

“He’s not a particularly good boxer, but he has that weapon in his punch that is devastating. That makes him a live fighter in any fight that he’s in,” Arum said.

It’s highly doubtful that Fury vs. Wilder 3 will do mover than one million buys, but you can’t blame Arum for hoping that it does.

They tried to get Wilder to step aside

“I don’t know what Shelly [Finkel] is talking about,” Arum said when told that Wilder’s co-manager Shelly Finkel said that Fury’s management did nothing to try and save the Anthony Joshua fight by offering Deontay a step aside.

Image: Bob Arum predicts Fury vs. Wilder 3 does one million pay-per-view buys

“Frank [Warren] talks to Shelly all the time. I don’t talk to Shelly because I have no use for him, but Frank talks to him all the time.

“I asked Frank once the arbitrator’s decision came down. I said, ‘Frank, see if they’ll take a step aside,’ and Frank came back and said, ‘Don’t even mention it. We want the fight. We don’t want any step aside money.’

“What are we supposed to do? They tell us ‘don’t even mention step aside money. We want the fight.’

“Okay, so we finalized the fight. I can’t believe anything Eddie [Hearn] says. Has he seen the contracts?” said Arum when told that Hearn said that Team Fury could have terminated the Wilder fight to avoid a trilogy match.

“How does he have the nerve to say that? Obviously, if we could have terminated it, we wouldn’t have gone to arbitration, and we wouldn’t have been subject to the arbitrator’s ruling that he had to fight Wilder.

“I know for a fact that if the Saudi deal had been finalized by the time the arbitrator ruled, he might have given Wilder damages, but he wouldn’t have enjoined that fight.

“The problem was Eddie Hearn. Believe me; Hearn overreached the situation. Not necessarily for himself, but as a negotiator, he convinced the Saudis they were better off buying all the rights rather than just the site rights.

“That was stupid because if the Saudis were going to buy the television rights, they had to examine quite correctly the contracts that Top Rank had with ESPN and Joshua had with Sky, that Frank had with BT, and so forth.

“That was the normal due diligence, but that was the delay. They weren’t familiar, and their attorneys in London were not familiar with the television business and the boxing business.

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“They were bright, and they were able, but it takes time. But that just delayed, delayed, delay. So by the time the arbitrator had to make his ruling, he knew we had no deal for the Joshua fight in Saudi Arabia.

“That’s the long and short of it. That’s not because Eddie did something wrong purposefully. I’m not claiming that.

“That’s stupid. Eddie did make a mistake and trying to go ahead and sell all the rights to the Saudis. That was going to take ages to accomplish because the Saudis may have all the money in the world, but they’re not fools, and they had to know what they were buying,” Arum said.

Whatever offer that was made to Deontay to have him step aside for the Joshua vs. Fury fight it wasn’t enough. If they had offered Wilder $20 million with the guarantee that he can fight the winner, he’d have probably agreed to it.

Wilder obviously wasn’t going to be given much of a step aside, so he failed to accept what they offered. It would be interesting to know how much or how little Wilder was offered.

Bob says they didn’t conceal Fury was in arbitration

“Absolutely, we’re not crazy,” said Arum about Hearn knowing ahead of time that Fury was in arbitration with Wilder.

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“When we signed the initial deal with Fury and Joshua, subject to finding a site, we put in there about the arbitration. The idea that we concealed it is ludicrous because, first of all, the media had reported it.

“It was in the contract. We have lawyers that have great ability, and they’re great attorneys.

“They would insist, and they did insist that they put it in the contract so the other side couldn’t say, ‘Hey, you misled us.’ No, not 100%,” said Arum when told that Hearn said that he had claimed that 100 percent the arbitration case wouldn’t be an issue.

“We thought going in that we were the favorites to win the [arbitration] case. We believed that to be the case,’ said Arum.

Hearn seemed to believe that Fury would win his arbitration case with Wilder, which may have been a mistake on his part.

With all the hard work that Hearn put in to put together the site deal with the Saudis for the Anthony Joshua vs. Fury fight, you can understand why he’d be furious at learning later that Tyson had lost his arbitration case.