Joshua Buatsi out of contract with Matchroom, Hearn trying to re-sign him for Bivol or Yarde fight

By Boxing News - 02/02/2023 - Comments

By Barry Holbrook: Eddie Hearn states that 2016 Olympic bronze medalist Joshua Buatsi is now out of contract with Matchroom Boxing, but he has matching rights and is looking to re-sign him to set him up with a fight against Dmitry Bivol or Anthony Yarde.

Despite having loads of talent, Buatsi (16-0, 13 KOs) has been largely the forgotten man with Hearn, as his activity has been sporadic since 2020, and he’s currently been out of the ring for nine months.

Although Hearn feels confident that the 29-year-old Buatsi will remain as part of the Matchroom team, it wouldn’t be a shock to see him sign with Queensberry Promotions that can keep him busy, and put him in a world title situation.

If Buatsi chooses to move on, Top Rank’s Bob Arum would be a good landing spot for the former Matchroom fighter. Arum would likely jump at the chance to sign Buatsi so that he could match him against IBF, WBC & WBO light heavyweight champion Artur Beterbiev and former WBO champ Joe Smith Jr.

The lack of activity and pedestrian-level opposition that Buatsi has been matched against has kept him from becoming the big star that he should be.

While arguably less talented fighters like Conor Benn rise to stardom in the Matchroom organization, Buatsi has pretty much languished in the background, which is baffling because he’s got the goods to be a world champion.

With Benn, some would say it’s all smoke & mirrors, as he’s not someone that will likely ever win a world title, but you can’t say the same about Buatsi.

“I think Buatsi needs to make up for lost time. He’s had his final fight with us. Now we matching rights moving forward.¬†We intend to make sure he remains a Matchroom fighter, and I think that’s his mindset as well,” said Eddie Hearn to iFL TV,” about Joshua Buatsi.

“He last fought in May, and we want to see him back in the ring as soon as possible. I think there are some massive fights out there for him.

“I think the Anthony Yarde fight is a tremendous fight. Dmitry Bivol, if Callum Smith fights Beterbiev, will be looking to defend his [light heavyweight] championship prior to the Canelo fight [in September]. I think Joshua Buatsi is the name that we would be looking to put forward for that fight,” said Hearn.

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