Bob Arum says Usyk’s purse for Fury $20M in London, $60M in Saudi

By Boxing News - 03/31/2023 - Comments

By Jake Tiernan: Promoter Bob Arum revealed today that Oleksandr Usyk’s purse would have been $20 million to fight Tyson Fury in London, England, whereas he would have made $60 million from Saudi Arabia if the fight had taken place there in April 29th for the undisputed heavyweight clash.

According to Arum, Usyk (20-0, 13 KOs) had already made his own deal with the Saudis to get $60M, and naturally, he wasn’t happy to take a massive $40M pay cut to fight Fury (33-0-1, 24 KOs) in London at Wembley Stadium on April 29th.

Usyk was still willing to fight Fury on that date, even making considerably less money. Arum didn’t go into what Fury felt about the prospects making less money fighting in London against the crafty Usyk, but one can surmise that with the roadblocks he put in front of the talented IBF, WBA & WBO champion with the lopsided 70-30 purse split and then the 50-50 rematch clause, he wasn’t keen to fight him in the UK on April 29th. In other words, Fury wanted to wait on the Saudi money to come through before fighting Usyk.

Arum says the Fury-Usyk fight was moved to London for April 29th because the Saudis wouldn’t be ready to stage the battle in their country until December.

“What’s happening in boxing is the Saudis show interest, and everybody wants to put everything on hold to see if the Saudis come through with really big money, and once the Saudis told us they weren’t interested in the [Fury vs. Usyk] fight this time a year then it was very easy to finalize,”  said Bob Arum to Steve Kim on Twitter about the Tyson Fury vs. Oleksandr Usyk undisputed heavyweight clash, which failed to happen.

“Because in the Mideast, the tendency to put up a lot more money than any place else, it’s normal for people, all kinds of people, whether they’re promoters or fighters, to hold out and hope that lightning strikes, I mean, that was the problem with Fury-Usyk negotiations.

“The deal that was worked out for Usyk in London was he was pretty well guaranteed between £12-15million, which is almost $20m. But he had talked previously with the Saudis who were interested in doing this fight but not until the winter, where they had apparently agreed to pay him $60m. So can you blame him for being disappointed with $15-20m? No, that’s human nature,” said Arum about Usyk not being happy at losing out on the huge dough.

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