Bob Arum, co-promoter of Tyson Fury, has said that he will be having extensive talks this week with Oleksandr Usyk’s team about setting up an undisputed fight.
‘The Gypsy King’ is currently the proud owner of the WBC belt. The WBA, IBF, WBO, and Ring titles are all held in Ukraine by former cruiserweight champion, Oleksandr Usyk. A fight between the two would crown an undisputed heavyweight champion for the first time since Lennox Lewis.
Despite Fury having just announced a title defence against Derek Chisora on December 3, and an undisputed fight depending on him coming out victorious, Arum seems keen to progress the historic fight with Usyk in the background. He shared his plans with Sky Sports.
“Oleksandr Usyk I look at as a very good friend because he is the best friend of Vasily Lomachenko. They’re very close, went to the same Olympic Games, and they share a manager in Egis Klimas who’s a very good friend of ours and coincidentally we [Top Rank] will be promoting Vasily’s next fight on October 29 from Madison Square Garden.”
“Egis and Oleksandr Usyk will be there and I’ll be having dinner with them without any question, probably the Thursday night before the fight and so I’ll have a very long discussion with them about what their plans are and when it could be in their best interests to get the fight on. I know from previous conversations with both of them that they want that fight against Tyson Fury.”
The hall-of fame promoter, who has worked with boxing greats like Roberto Duran and Mike Tyson, is not overlooking the Chisora bout though. He pointed out that, whilst talks would begin, nothing would be finalised just yet.
“People tend to forget, yes Chisora lost twice early on to Tyson but remember his fight with Usyk where he gave Usyk life and death in that fight and then a lot thought that he might have eked out a victory in that fight. If you’re getting ready to fight Usyk, fight a guy who went in with him and carried him into deep waters.”
“We’re not signing for anything until the Chisora fight is over. I don’t count my chickens before they’re hatched. I’ll wait for that fight to be over.”
Should Fury come through Chisora, as most in the sport expect him to, it seems certain that a fight for all the belts will be what he’s pursuing not long after the turn of the year. As for Usyk, he’s made it clear that it’s what he wants.