Eddie Hearn wants Dillian Whyte vs. Chris Arreola for October, for Fury’s WBC title
By Barry Holbrook: Eddie Hearn says he wants to get up a fight between WBC interim heavyweight champion Dillian Whyte and former three-time world title challenger Chris Arreola for October in the UK.
While that’s not exactly what you would call a ‘big fight,’ it’s probably the best Whyte can hope for.
Arreola (38-7-1, 33 KOs) is 40-years-old and is coming off of consecutive losses to Andy Ruiz Jr and Adam Kownacki.
Clearly, Arreola’s best days are well behind him in the rearview mirror, but his name is recognizable to the casual boxing fans in the United States.
Has Arreola’s shoulder healed?
Moreover, Arreola is fighting at a higher level than Whyte’s last opponent, 41-year-old Alexander Povetkin, who looked like he’d crawled out of a hospital bed into the ring last March after being severely ill with COVID-19.
Povetkin looked like he still needed more time to recover, but he took the fight anyway and was blown out by Whyte in four rounds.
What we don’t know about Arreola is whether his left shoulder has healed from his recent loss to Andy Ruiz Jr on May 1st.
Arreola was having problems with his shoulder during the contest, and it hampered his effectiveness. What we don’t need is for Whyte to be fighting another opponent that isn’t 100%.
Now that Whyte (28-2, 19 KOs) is no longer fighting twice in 2021, Hearn has given up on the idea of matching him against American Jermaine Franklin in September.
Hearn wants to make the most of Whyte’s next fight since it’s the only one he’ll be taking this year.
Hearn wants Arreola for Whyte in October
“Everyone has been waiting for the Canelo date, and then it comes around really, and you realize it’s six weeks away,” said Eddie Hearn to iFL TV.
“I think we’ve kind of established as well that he’s [Whyte] is going to fight once this year.
“So rather than try and fight once in September and then, let’s get the right fight, a bigger fight around October, and we’ll work on that,” Hearn said about wanting a high-quality opponent for Dillian’s next fight.
“There’s a number of fights [for Whyte]. I mean, we quite like the [Chris] Arreola fight. And I spoke to [manager] Luis DeCubas and a few people.
“I know Jermaine Franklin has been mentioned before. And I think Dillian wants a REAL fight, and that’s [Arreola] a fun fight,” said Hearn on Whyte’s potential next opponent for October.
If Hearn can’t get Andy Ruiz Jr for Whyte, Arreola would be a good choice, as long as he’s healthy enough to fight. It might be risky for Hearn to set up a fight with Arreola, though, as he clearly had problems with his shoulder last May.
Unless Arreola has gone under the knife to repair the problem, it’s questionable whether he can be counted on to make it through training camp to fight Whyte in October.
A better option for Whyte would be Michael Hunter, Frank Sanchez, or Felip Hrgovic. A least those guys are younger and not dealing with shoulder problems.
Fury should be given ‘Champion in recess tag’
“We were talking earlier about the Andy Ruiz fight. That’s such a great fight. Dillian Whyte against Andy Ruiz is such a great fight,” said Hearn.
“Andy Ruiz, where you at?” said Whyte. “We offered him money already. How much did we offer him? We offered him $6 million two years ago or something?” said Dillian about having offered Andy Ruiz Jr. six million dollars, which he didn’t accept for some reason.
“Big fight,” continued Hearn on the Whyte vs. Ruiz clash. “But hopefully, the WBC listens to the requests to put Tyson Fury into recess [due to his year and a half of inactivity] and make Dillian Whyte world champion. We’ll see what happens.
“I want to fight,” said Whyte.
“They’ve [WBC] already ordered Tyson Fury vs. Dillian Whyte before,” said Hearn. “He [Fury] come out with, ‘I’ll fight Dillian Whyte,’ and then the WBC said, ‘There we go, we’ll order it.’ Then he [Fury] just went, ‘No.'”
“That’s what they [WBC] did with Devin Haney,” said Whyte about the World Boxing Council giving Haney the ‘Champion in Reccess’ tag after he suffered a shoulder injury in his fight with Alfredo Santiago in November 2019.
“The champion [Haney] was injured, so they just put the next guy in [as WBC lightweight champion], and when after you come back, you fight the other guy. So why didn’t they [WBC] do the same with me?” said Whyte.
“Yeah, we’ve been talking about America for a while now, but I think if we go once this year, it’s likely it’ll be in the UK,” said Hearn about Dillian Whyte.
You can argue that the World Boxing Council should have already stripped Fury of his WBC title and given him the ‘Champion in Recess’ tag a long time ago, but it’s obvious why they haven’t done so.
Fury is a popular heavyweight, and it makes more sense for the WBC to let Fury sit on his title until he faces Deontay Wilder on October 9th. If Fury weren’t so popular, the WBC would have likely stripped him a long time ago and elevated Whyte to the champion.
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