Hrgovic mandatory won’t stop Usyk-Fury fight says Usyk’s promoter
By Barry Holbrook: Oleksandr Usyk’s promoter Alex Krassyuk says Usyk’s IBF-ordered title defense against mandatory challenger Filip Hrgovic won’t halt the undisputed clash against WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury from happening next.
Krassyuk isn’t saying how the undisputed fight between IBF/WBA/WBO champion Usyk and Fury will proceed without the IBF letting it go ahead, but he seems confident based on his interview with Sky Sports.
If Krassyuk is wrong, of course, Usyk (20-0, 13 KOs) will need to decide between defending against the huge, dangerous 2016 Olympic bronze medalist Hrgovic (15-0, 12 KOs) or vacating his IBF title.
Unless an arrangement is made for an exception or a step-aside deal, it’s also a possibility the IBF could strip Usyk of his belt with their organization if he chooses to ignore them, hoping that they won’t do anything to block the undisputed match.
“At this stage, I can anticipate that it will not influence the undisputed anyhow,” said Usyk’s promoter Alex Krassyuk to Sky Sports about his belief that the IBF-ordered fight for Oleksandr against Hrgovic won’t block the Usyk-Fury undisputed clash from happening next.
“We expect his next fight to be for the undisputed, so most likely; it will take place in the Middle East,” Krassyuk continued about the Fury vs. Usyk fight.
Again, if Krassyuk is wrong about his belief that the IBF won’t block the Usyk-Fury fight from happening for the undisputed clash, they will have to negotiate a fight with the unbeaten Hrgovic if they want to hold onto the IBF’s belt.
It’s unclear what Fury thinks about fighting Usyk without all the titles being on the line. Fury might not care because Usyk would still have the WBA & WBO belts for him to win, and winning those straps would put the ‘Gypsy King’ one title away from becoming the undisputed champion.
If Fury refuses to fight Usyk without the IBF being a part, then Oleksandr would need to go in a different direction for his next match. In that case, Usyk could decide to take the risky fight against Hrgovic or defend against one of the other contenders, such as Deontay Wilder.
Apart from Fury, Wilder would arguably be the biggest money fight available for Usyk unless Canelo Alvarez wants to come up to heavyweight to challenge him for his belts.
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