By Matt Lieberman: Bob Arum says the Anthony Joshua vs. Tyson Fury match-up is now “dead in the water” for July or August. The negotiations between these two popular heavyweight world champions have been a time drain, which has prevented both from getting in the ring to fight other opposition.
For Fury, it’s worse because he hasn’t fought in 14 months, and he’s looking at perhaps three to four months before he could face Joshua IF the Saudi deal were to be wrapped up quickly.
According to Arum, he doesn’t think the deal will be done soon, and he doesn’t want to have Fury on the sidelines missing out on big paydays.
Also, the ring rust that Fury has on him could negatively impact his performance against Joshua (24-1, 22 KOs) if he’s forced to wait until July or August before fighting him.
This isn’t just about a payday for Fury and Arum. They want to win that fight against Joshua, and it’ll be difficult to do that if Fury is coming off an 18-month layoff.
Arum wants both fighters to take an interim fight while they wait for the Saudi deal to slowly get made.
Is the mediation going badly for Fury?
Arum already has his sights set on a lucrative trilogy fight between WBC champion Fury (30-0-1, 21 KOs) and Deontay ‘Bronze Bomber’ Wilder. Some believe the mediation with Wilder isn’t going in Fury’s favor. Hence, making the fight with Wilder (42-1-1 41 KOs) will be a must if that’s the case.
Either way, there’s a lot of money that can be made by Fury and Top Rank by taking the fight with Wilder while it’s there.
It’s better to take that fight than to pass it up and watch Wilder potentially lose to Andy Ruiz Jr, considering that’s a fight that could happen next.
Ruiz Jr is interested in fighting Wilder, and the feelings are mutual. Wilder could win that fight, but he could also lose. If he loses to Ruiz, Fury will have missed out on a massive payday.
Speaking to the Telegraph Sport, Top Rank promoter Arum believes it’ll take many months for the Saudi deal that British promoter Eddie Hearn is working on to be completed.
Interestingly, Hearn was whistling a different tune on Thursday, saying that he believed that the Joshua vs. Fury fight will still absolutely get made.
It’s less important for Joshua to take a tune-up than Fury because he fought last December, stopping Kubrat Pulev.