Anthony Joshua’s promoter, Eddie Hearn, has provided a blueprint for the two-time world champion to be realised by the end of the year.
Following a comfortable yet unspectacular win over Jermaine Franklin, Joshua has been in limbo as to a fight announcement largely due to Saudi Arabia’s interest in staging one of the biggest boxing events the sport has ever seen.
“The situation is, Saudi Arabia would like to do Fury against Usyk, AJ against Wilder on the same night. I went out there two weeks ago, they’re deadly serious. I’ve done two big fights with them before. I know they deliver.”
“As I understand it, they’ve been doing their own negotiations with Deontay Wilder, which have gone very well. They’ve been talking to Usyk for a year because obviously he boxed AJ over there. And they know the rough kind of numbers of what we want based on what we received for the Andy Ruiz fight and the Usyk fight in Saudi.
Fury’s another story altogether, but not my business. All I’m concerned about is doing the deal for AJ against Wilder.”
With those plans set for December, Hearn then discussed what would happen in the interim, confirming that his man would be out in August.
“We work backwards on that regarding the August fight that he will be having. We all believe he needs that fight in August. More time with Derrick James, more preparation for Deontay Wilder, and then that’s it.
As for opponent, Hearn said it was important to get Joshua a dance partner that would light a fire in him. Enter Dillian Whyte.
“Who we choose will be dependant on if we get that Wilder deal done. I like the Dillian Whyte fight.”
If all goes ahead as laid out, it looks like Joshua’s promise of a three-fight year will be delivered.