Tyson Fury vs. Deontay Wilder Trilogy Fight Reportedly Ordered by Arbitrator

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured Columnist IVMay 17, 2021

Tyson Fury, left, of England, fight Deontay Wilder during a WBC heavyweight championship boxing match Saturday, Feb. 22, 2020, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken)
AP Photo/Isaac Brekken

An arbitrator ruled in favor of Deontay Wilder, determining Tyson Fury must fight Wilder for a third time by Sept. 15, according to ESPN's Mark Kriegel and The Athletic's Mike Coppinger.

The development comes one day after Fury said the final details were getting ironed out for him to fight Anthony Joshua on Aug. 14 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The status for that bout is now unclear with the ruling.

Chris Mannix @SIChrisMannix

Unclear what this means for Fury-Joshua, which has been penciled in for August 14th. It's boxing -- you can't make people fight. But Fury can be sued for breach of contract if he moves ahead with the AJ fight and/or have his WBC title stripped. Lot of moving parts.

Wilder and Fury fought to a split decision in December 2018, and Fury earned a seventh-round TKO in the rematch in February 2020.

Coppinger explained last November how the contract for the second installment included a clause for a third fight. Fury's camp contended the clause expired once negotiations for an event in December fell through. Wilder's representatives, however, chose to bring in a retired judge to serve as the mediator.

Joshua could wind up as the biggest loser from the situation.

Kriegel reported in April the 31-year-old heavyweight was set to earn a $75 million along with Fury for their encounter this summer. That figure is $15 million more than Joshua received for his rematch with Andy Ruiz in December 2019. Now, he might have to wait on his big payday.

This could also simply provide Wilder with more leverage in renewed negotiations with Fury. The Bronze Bomber is in a strong position to not only be richly compensated with step aside money but also meet Joshua or Fury at a later date. Since he hasn't fought since losing to Fury, one could argue he'd benefit from a rebound matchup anyway.

Considering what Kriegel reported was a $155 million site fee for Fury vs. Joshua, it seems like there's too much at stake to take that off the calendar entirely. But the two stars undoubtedly saw a big wrench thrown into their plans Monday.