Anthony Joshua vs Tyson Fury could happen twice in 2021, says Eddie Hearn | Boxing News
“I had a conversation [on Thursday] saying: ‘Wilder is not stepping aside, we will take care of that fight, you take care of the Pulev fight, but let’s get a deal done for 2021′”
By Andy Scott & James Dielhenn
Last Updated: 14/05/20 6:48pm
Anthony Joshua would “sign now” to secure a Tyson Fury showdown and there could even be a two-fight deal for 2021, says Eddie Hearn.
Joshua and Fury hold every major world heavyweight title and the British pair are primed to hold talks over a fight to crown an undisputed champion.
“It would probably be a two-fight deal,” Hearn told Sky Sports. “Any deal between Fury and AJ, you run it twice.
“It is not a condition of the deal but it was in their deal with Deontay Wilder, and it is the biggest fight in boxing, so it is likely you will see that twice.”
Joshua must first defend his IBF, WBA and WBO titles against Kubrat Pulev while Wilder is entitled to a third WBC championship fight with Fury.
“Wilder is not going to be stepping aside so [Pulev] is the fight for us,” Hearn said.
“I had a conversation [on Thursday] saying: ‘Wilder is not stepping aside, we will take care of that fight, you take care of the Pulev fight, but let’s get a deal done for 2021’.
“We have no problem signing now to fight Fury in 2021.
“It will work out better for both of them to box off those fights then have a clear route, subject to Dillian Whyte being mandatory to Fury, to get [an undisputed title fight] done.”
Joshua’s fight with Pulev will not take place behind-closed-doors so a location and a date are currently being searched for.
“We have about three more weeks left on the exploring and then we’ll see where the best options lie,” Pulev’s manager Ivaylo Gotsev told Sky Sports.
Hearn said: “The focus remains the same – do the fight in the UK.
“We have also now conceded that AJ will only fight once this year.
“Before it was all about getting that fight in early-August to make sure we could fight in December. Because of the preparation needed and the magnitude of his shows, AJ will only box once in 2020.
“We hope between September and December live gates will return to the UK. There is also a chance they won’t – if that’s the case, we will take the fight elsewhere.
“We have had a number of approaches from the Middle East, China, and Croatia to stage the fight. We want to give ourselves every opportunity to stage it in the UK but we know it may not be possible.
“We want the mandatory defence boxed off, out of the way, before he moves into the undisputed fight next year.”
Fury’s US-based promoter, Top Rank’s Bob Arum, previously told Sky Sports: “If we do fights without audiences, how do you do Fury vs Wilder without an audience? The live gate for the last fight accounted for almost $17m. How do you replace that?
“Hopefully by the winter they will allow people to attend sporting events.”
Wilder previously denied he would opt out of a third fight with Fury: “Why wouldn’t I want it?
“He knows that wasn’t me. I know that wasn’t me. That wasn’t the real Deontay Wilder, something was wrong.
“There is more fuel on the fire. This is the final straw.”
Dillian Whyte’s heavyweight battle with Alexander Povetkin and Katie Taylor’s undisputed lightweight title fight against Amanda Serrano are being planned for July in the UK at a behind-closed-doors venue.