Bob Arum Has 'Absolutely No Confidence' in Fury vs. Joshua Summer Fight Contract

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistApril 29, 2021

Tyson Fury, of England, fights Deontay Wilder, not pictured, during a WBC heavyweight championship boxing match Saturday, Feb. 22, 2020, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/Isaac Brekken)
Isaac Brekken/Associated Press

Don't expect to see Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua square up this summer. 

Top Rank's Bob Arum told Chris Mannix of SI.com Thursday he has "absolutely no confidence" that a deal for a summer fight will get done. 

The fight was being targeted for Saudi Arabia, but such an arrangement "will take months to get sorted out."

Arum provided more details during an interview with Gareth A. Davies of the Telegraph earlier on Thursday:

"It will take months for the Saudis to do their due diligence on such a huge deal. It is not just a site fee, there are ancillary demands from the Saudis stretching into the broadcast deals and other things, it could take months for it all to play out. It could even take until 2022 the way it looks right now.

"The fight in July or August is dead in the water as far as we are concerned. The two fighters need to go and have other fights this summer while the negotiations for that fight in the Middle East conclude." 

That followed Joshua's promoter, Eddie Hearn, saying Thursday: "We have an offer in writing from a site, the same site that we've dealt with before. The same people we've dealt with before. We know all about them. This is a done deal from that site."

And despite Arum's comments, The Athletic's Mike Coppinger reported that "a site deal worth more than $150 million is expected to be completed this weekend that will land the four-belt unification fight in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, in early August."

As for other potential fights, Mannix tweeted that finishing off the trilogy between Fury and Deontay Wilder potentially isn't out of the question:

Chris Mannix @SIChrisMannix

A third fight between Fury and Deontay Wilder -- while not actively being discussed -- is relatively easy to piece together, per industry sources. Sticking point will be the guarantees -- those are not negotiated in the original contract.

Fury (30-0-1) last fought in February 2020, defeating Wilder by TKO. The first matchup between the two was ruled a draw. 

Joshua (24-1) last fought in December 2020, knocking out Kubrat Pulev. A matchup between Fury (WBC heavyweight champion) and Joshua (WBA, IBF, WBO and IBO heavyweight titles) would serve as a unification bout for the heavyweight class. 


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