Eddie Hearn has addressed the scenario of Deontay Wilder being given a shot at Oleksandr Usyk’s unified heavyweight titles amidst negotiations with Anthony Joshua.
Wilder and ‘AJ’ are in positive talks with Saudi Arabia to stage an end-of-the-year heavyweight thriller. All signs pointed to it happening, with each fighter taking a lower pressure fight in the interim.
That may have changed due to Usyk’s circumstances. Scheduled to start facing his mandatories, the first in line was the WBA’s Daniel Dubois.
With no deal reached between the teams, purse bids have been called for May 25, but recent disruptions in the camp of Dubois have many in the sport believing that he won’t pursue the mandatory shot. Speaking to Boxing Social, Hearn agreed with that.
“You hear things, don’t you. I’m hearing that fight’s not going ahead, the purse bids aren’t going ahead … I don’t believe that Usyk and Dubois is happening.”
The WBA recently installed Wilder as their number two ranked contender, and have confirmed that the title shot will fall at his feet should Dubois remove himself from the process.
That may cause any plans of a transatlantic tear-up with ‘AJ’ to crumble, but it’s something Hearn says the American can’t be blamed for.
“Deontay Wilder’s gonna do what he does. If he gets a shot at the world title you can’t blame him for having a pop at that. Obviously the money is much bigger for the AJ fight.”
“Deontay Wilder doesn’t beat Oleksandr Usyk in my opinion. From our point of view, we’re just looking after the career of Anthony Joshua. He will fight early August in my opinion. We want to try and get the Wilder fight done, but if we can’t we’ll just proceed with that [August] fight anyway.”
More is expected to unfold as the purse bid date nears.