Anthony Joshua thinks this is his only chance to fight Tyson Fury, says Eddie Hearn | Boxing News
The timing is difficult for Anthony Joshua. He has suffered two punishing defeats to Oleksandr Usyk and appeared to all the world to be in turmoil with an outpouring of emotion after the most recent loss.
But he is now in serious negotiations to take on another high-profile contest with British heavyweight rival and WBC champion Tyson Fury.
Eddie Hearn, Joshua’s promoter, explained, “He thinks: this is my only chance, because if he fights Usyk, win or lose I think he’ll retire or you never know with Fury, he could just never fight again.”
Oleksandr Usyk used his classy skills to win a split decision after an enthralling rematch with Anthony Joshua. Watch the full repeat on Sky Sports, Sky Sports YouTube, SkySports.com or the Sky Sports App
Joshua has already agreed to a December 3 date for the fight and the financial split Fury has offered.
“The reason he accepts these terms is he feels this is the only chance he’ll get to fight Tyson Fury. So therefore, okay, it would have been better to come off a victory but we’re here and [Joshua thinks] I can beat him and I feel good,” Hearn said.
“When he drew to [Deontay] Wilder, we offered Fury the fight against AJ and we offered him 60-40 and he said no and he said I’ll only take 50-50. That’s one of the reasons I wanted to push back on some of the terms. But in the end it was AJ who overruled and said no just accept it.
“He’s always believed he can beat him.”
Hearn has met George Warren, one of Fury’s representatives and last Friday accepted their terms in writing. The next step is to receive and review contracts.
“Broadcasters need to have their discussions,” Hearns said. “Which I don’t think will be a problem. It’s actually not that complicated.
“If they’re genuine and George tells me they are, then I think the fight will get made,” he continued. “I think George feels his instructions are to make the fight. But you just never know with Tyson Fury… Is this a ploy to speed up the Usyk fight, get more money from a site?
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“It might have been a bluff, or a bit of publicity that actually turns into it happening. Or maybe it was genuine from the start.
“It could be anything. That’s a sceptical view but right now I’m going along the lines of I believe him because I want to be positive and work together to make it happen.”
Whatever happens Joshua intends to box again in December. “I can’t put AJ’s future in the hands of Tyson Fury. Whilst we’ll be as positive as we can, we’ll be as helpful as we can, I need to have plan B up my sleeve because this might not happen,” Hearn said.
But it was looking at other options for his next fight that also enthused Joshua about potentially boxing Fury.
“We’ve been looking at opponents for AJ for December and his list is very different to my list. So I don’t think he’s interested in opponents that he’s just going to get no credit or respect for. Straightaway when I asked him about this fight, he went, ‘Let’s do it’,” Hearn said.
“He hasn’t got any major injuries or anything like that. They want to do it.
“I think he’s coming off a decent performance,” the promoter added. “He just fancies the fight and fancies his chances. He’s willing to roll the dice.”
“Let’s do it.” Anthony Joshua takes aim at Tyson Fury
‘This is the time to make it’
Adam Smith, head of boxing development at Sky Sports, thinks now is the time to make Anthony Joshua versus Tyson Fury.
“It is a big British fight, especially at heavyweight. There is something about these grudge matches, everybody loves it. The weight of expectation has changed a bit, people thought Fury was a narrow favourite now he might be the bigger favourite. But don’t write Joshua off,” he said.
“It is moving at some pace now; the mind games start. Fury has gone very quiet for a while which is unusual. We will wait and see, when things go quiet, possibly announcements are imminent. I am hearing good things about this.
“AJ has nothing to lose, he is coming off two defeats. He is the big underdog; he will definitely be the underdog. It’s Fury’s show still, he has come out of ‘retirement’, he loves boxing, he is at the top of the game, he can add multi-millions to his pot.
“They have huge respect for each other, they’ve known each other and grown up with each other side by side. They both want this fight; they respect the other gladiator and I think this is the time to make it. Who knows, if it is a good fight we may get more. Trilogies are great. You never know, maybe we will get three of this one.”
Source: SkySports | News
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