Promoter Eddie Hearn had big plans for the rematch between Anthony Joshua and Wladimir Klitschko. He flew to Las Vegas and started making serious moves behind the scenes. The idea was to organise a British invasion in Vegas just like Ricky Hatton did when he fought Floyd Mayweather and thousands followed Hatton on the other side of the pond.
With Klitschko’s retirement, it’s time for plan B – Kubrat Pulev. Hearn has been on the fence about the venue and date, but he’s given the latest update.
“Yeah we know it’s going to be Kubrat Pulev. Obviously there was an order made some time ago now by the IBF which we had to be a part of and sign. If it wasn’t Klitschko, then it was going to be Kubrat Pulev, who is the No 1 challenger with the IBF. He’s been AJ’s mandatory for probably 12 months now, so he’s due his shot,” confirmed Hearn in an interview with Sky Sports.
So, is it Wales or Vegas?
“It’s just a case of whether that fight’s going to be at the Millennium Stadium, or that fight’s going to be in Las Vegas. Probably at the end of next week, we will make that decision. Probably right now, October 28th at the Millennium Stadium is a frontrunner,” revealed the promoter.
The WBA recently ordered Joshua to defend his title against their mandatory challenger, Luis Ortiz. Deontay Wilder has also challenged the Londoner to fight and push the mandatories aside.
As previously mentioned, Hearn says the order now is Pulev, Ortiz, and Wilder.
“We’re going to have to fight Luis Ortiz after Kubrat Pulev. Deontay Wilder wants to fight, so we’re mapping things out nicely. Things are looking good, although the Klitschko retirement was a little bit disappointing for fight fans, we know that AJ has got a long career ahead of him,” summarised the promoter.