By Jack Tiernan: American boxing fans will need to pay to watch WBC heavyweight Tyson Fury defend his title against Dillian Whyte on ESPN PPV for their fight on April 23rd in the UK. The contest will also be shown on BT Sports Box Office pay-per-view in the UK.
It’s a little jarring that American boxing fans will be asked to pay for this, given Whyte (28-2, 19 KOs) isn’t a household name in the States.
With the vast $41 million winning purse bid by promoter Frank Warren on Friday, the money has got to come from somewhere to make up for the expenditures for the huge purses for Fury and Whyte. PPV in the U.S and UK, along with ticket sales, will hopefully cover the costs.
The promoters for the event are going to need to stack the undercard with recognizable U.S fighters if they want to bring in a lot of PPV buys because it’s not enough that Fury will be fighting in the main event.
You can argue the only reason Fury’s fights did well recently in the U.S is that he was fighting American Deontay Wilder. Without Wilder, Fury wouldn’t have been able to fight on PPV without it bombing.
WBC 10% bonus purse split
Warren won the purse bid on Friday, and the match is being targeted for the Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales.
Fury will get $32 million and Whyte 8.2 million, which was how it was initially confirmed. But the WBC has chosen to hold back 10% of the purse for the winner’s bonus.
The purses will now be Fury getting $7.9 million and Whyte $7.4M. Whoever wins the fight will get an additional $4.1 million.
According to Dan Rafael, Fury will be using unbeaten heavyweight prospect Jared Anderson as his sparring partner to help him prepare for the fight. Anderson is a fighter that helped Fury get ready for his recent trilogy match with Deontsy Wilder, which he won by a late stoppage.
“Just spoke to Bob Arum about Fury-Whyte purse bid. He said he spoke to Tyson Fury right after, and Tyson told him to make sure to get Jared Anderson, the prospect of the year, over to the UK to spar with him. Arum said Jared will indeed be in Fury’s camp & fight on the card. #boxing,” said @DanRafael1.
“They’ve got until April 29th to stage the fight,” said Gareth Davies to iFL TV on the Fury vs. Whyte fight. “The Principality Stadium in Cardiff is where it’s going to be the prime venue for Whyte vs. Fury for the WBC, and I suppose for the Ring Magazine title, as long as that’s verified by Ring Magazine.
“It’s been revealed this week that Usyk and his team have been in talks with Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury about Anthony Joshua stepping aside. They didn’t come to that conclusion in the end.
“Everyone added their dirty linen late in the week when it collapsed, claim and counterclaim. It was a very complex business deal to be done by Anthony Joshua and Dillian Whyte.
“I wish Anthony Joshua well in the rematch with Oleksandr Usyk. That hasn’t even been officially announced, has it? That’s interesting. I do hope that fight is going to go ahead.
Biggest purse bid in history
“It’s the biggest purse bid in history with a total of 72 million dollars. It was incredible, really,” said Gareth on Friday’s purse bid for the Fury vs. Whyte fight. “Eddie Hearn had his figure.
“He told us that he had his figure of 24 million pounds, and both men get a tremendous payday out of it—25 million [pounds] for Tyson Fury and six million for Dillian Whyte. We’ve got a big British blockbuster on our hands now.
The time for talking is over! After years of back and forth, the heavyweight showdown is on! 🔥
— Boxing on BT Sport 🥊 (@BTSportBoxing) January 28, 2022
“You do need to sell it now and bring in a big sum of money and bring in all the players and all the broadcasters. Sell out the stadium have several press tours.
“It’s going to be a lot of fun, as far as I’m concerned. Tyson Fury doesn’t hold back, and Dillian Whyte doesn’t hold back. Maybe we’ll get some tables thrown. We’re going to get all kinds of shenanigans going on.
“Yeah, I think it is realistic,” said Davies when asked if one million pay-per-view buys are possible for BT Sport Box Office for Fury vs. Whyte. “They’ve got to sell it now, of course. It’s a good fight; there’s no question about it.
“Whyte has been waiting for this opportunity. Tyson Fury is going to get under his skin. Dillian is an emotional character who hasn’t been in recent times. I just feel there are fireworks with these two. Deep down, Dillian Whyte wants to prove something.
Dillian can fight for undisputed if he wins
“Tyson Fury is #1 in the world. He’s got a challenge to win the world title against the #1 in the world. Imagine if he [Whyte] wins it; he fights for the undisputed belts next. It’s incredible, it’s great.
“We’ve got one of the big heavyweight fights that we want. We just need the date, venue, and time now; ditto with Usyk and Joshua. Hopefully, that’ll come now.
— Top Rank Boxing (@trboxing) January 28, 2022
“There’s a large sum of money for the winner. So that’s another bonus for Dillian Whyte if he can win. Ditto for Tyson Fury,” Gareth said about the WBC’s unusual split with 10% going to the winner as a bonus of $4.1 million.
“It’s a massive purse, but we are talking about massive fights here now. Whyte and Fury, we are talking about the four biggest names in heavyweight boxing if you preclude, for the moment Deontay Wilder.
“Of course, we would love to see Usyk-Joshua and Whyte as well. This is what should be happening. We should be seeing all these guys fighting each other right now.
“We do still want to see Joshua against Fury. Will we still see Joshua against Fury if Joshua loses to Usyk a second time? Maybe not, but maybe we will. We don’t know.
“There’s so much money on the table, and that’s really one of the underlying themes for these last four or five months. Fury fought Wilder and Usyk fought Joshua. There have been talks about money. Money is what held it up because there’s so much money on the line.
Fury vs. Whyte =Biggest fight in UK history
“It was a massive fight at the time, but this is bigger,” said Gareth on the Fury vs. Whyte fight being bigger than the Lennox Lewis vs. Frank Bruno match in October 1993.
“I think Tyson Fury is as famous in the UK as Frank Bruno was, and Dillian Whyte is so well known now and has become a box office name. Yeah, it’s huge. It’s absolutely enormous. We’re very blessed to have heavyweights at the moment in Britain.
“If you look at Fury and Whyte and Joshua and Joe Joyce and Daniel Dubois and even Dereck Chisora. It’s a brilliant time for our heavyweights on the world scene. I can’t remember when we did have so many viable contenders for the belts.
“Joe Joyce might be champion in two years. Daniel Dubois may be the champion in two years. It’s brilliant,” said Gareth.