Deontay Wilder, the next big hope of American heavyweight boxing, has verbally accepted a showdown with Tyson Fury following a Twitter campaign from the British fighter.
Fury has been left without an opponent after David Haye underwent shoulder surgery—per BBC Sport, so he called for Wilder to step into the void.
The American appeared to accept, tweeting:
Fury instantly responded by challenging Wilder to make the fight official:
The development comes after Fury launched a series of tweets in the direction of Wilder on Monday, insisting it was the only fight the fans wanted to see.
Fury’s bold claims included:
An official response arrived from Wilder’s camp, with manager Jay Deas telling Phil D. Jay of World Boxing News that they await an approach from Fury’s promoter Mick Hennessy:
Of course we are interested in that fight.
I think it is the single biggest fight in the heavyweight division! It is one thing to call someone out, but I look forward to seeing if there is an offer (from Mick Hennessy).
If the offer equals the magnitude of the fight and event, then we can begin discussions. I know Peter Fury wants it to happen and so do I, so hopefully it can be worked out.
Should the fight be made official, there remains a date open on Feb. 8 in Manchester, when Fury was supposed to take on Haye.
Whether the Wilder camp will deem that to be enough time to prepare their fighter for the dangerous challenge of Fury remains an unresolved issue.
The likelihood is this fight will not happen next, purely due to the business side of world-level boxing.
Wilder and Fury are both currently building their reputations and, while Fury’s willingness to fight anybody should be admired, a fight with the American would be a disastrous move.
Wilder boasts vicious knockout power and has quicker hand speed than Fury. The Brit has been put down on more than one occasion in his career and would surely be left eating canvas if this fight takes place.
Both men are undefeated, but Wilder has knocked out all 30 of his rivals to date, per BoxRec.
Fury has finished 15 of his 21 opponents but has been far less impressive, dragging himself off the mat to beat a natural cruiserweight in Steve Cunningham during his last outing.
Wilder will know he can silence a noisy Brit and pick up new fans in the process en route to a future clash with Wladimir Klitschko.
Fury’s self-confidence will help convince himself that Wilder also represents his ticket to the world title, but in truth Hennessy would be wise to make the American an offer he can refuse on this occasion.