Eddie Hearn confirmed in an interview with iFLTV on Wednesday that Anthony Joshua has now accepted Tyson Fury‘s offer for a fight at the end of the year for a purse split of 60-40 in favour of ‘The Gypsy King’.
However, Hearn also confirmed that the offer was subject to a fight date in November, with Joshua preferring to fight on December 17th. Frank Warren’s Queensberry Promotions, who promote Fury in the UK, are said to have booked Cardiff’s Principality Stadium for that date but Fury himself weighed in on Instagram with the comment, “Nov 26th at Wembley or Dec 3rd in Cardiff. That’s the dates, take or leave“. In an interview with talkSPORT, Fury went further, saying “if a professional athlete who’s shredded all year round can’t get himself in shape in three months then there’s a problem“.
If the fight does indeed go ahead, the contract will of course involve a rematch clause for which the terms were laid out in the offer put to Team Joshua this week. While both sides are on the same page regarding a split for the first fight, Hearn did confirm that Joshua would want a 60-40 split in his favour second time around if he was to emerge victorious in the initial outing, contrary to what was laid down in the offer this week. “It was offered at 50-50 [the split for a prospective rematch]. We think that, if you’re saying you’re the champion and you should get 60-40, we believe that when AJ is champion that split should be reversed“. Hearn went on, “We don’t see that as an issue, we’re not moaning about the rematch clause, he’s the champion, we’ve had rematch clauses when AJ’s been champion“.
Talks are ongoing at the time of writing, with a lot of details yet to be ironed out before fight fans can even think about getting excited about a potential showdown between Fury and Joshua, with one major hurdle being the broadcasting of the fight itself. Fury is aligned with BT Sport while Joshua recently penned a long-term deal with streaming platform DAZN, and a potential joint pay-per-view venture between the pair has been mooted if the fight can be made. “I don’t think either party will have an issue [with the fight going on joint pay-per-view], Hearn said. “Those two businesses know each other I believe, Frank Warren was right yesterday when he said it does two million buys plus. This fight is so much bigger than Usyk-Fury”.
It must be said that both sides are being peculiarly amicable, something that’s not always been the case in the past. However, fights the size of this one are not easy to put together, often taking months to iron out creases before fighters put pen to paper. The reality is that if the pair are to face-off then contracts must realistically be signed within the next two weeks, with the mentioned dates of late November, early December looming just eleven and twelve weeks away.
While a clash between Fury and Joshua would no doubt be huge, indeed it would be the biggest in the history of the sport on British soil, everything should be taken with a pinch of salt at this stage where there is still a huge amount of ground to be made up before we can get our hopes up.