Joshua vs Parker: 'No problem' for Anthony Joshua to fight Deontay Wilder in America, says Eddie Hearn
By James Dielhenn
Last Updated: 18/01/18 12:10pm
Anthony Joshua would go to America to face Deontay Wilder, said promoter Eddie Hearn, but they expect "more difficult negotiations" to arrange that fight.
IBF and WBA 'super' heavyweight champion Joshua plans to add Joseph Parker's WBO belt to his collection when they unify titles on March 31, leaving the WBC's Wilder as the only other title-holder.
Hearn, and his father Barry, held talks with Wilder's representative Shelly Finkel in late 2017 to no avail, before agreeing Joshua vs Parker.
Joshua vs Parker on Box Office
Sky Sports Box Office will show the heavyweight unification from Cardiff, on Saturday, March 31.
If you go to the negotiating table with three belts instead of one, then you want an increase in the pie.
"This could be the last time [Joshua] fights in the UK in 2018," Hearn told Sky Sports about the Parker fight.
"The Wilder fight could be in America. We want to fight Wilder before the end of the year. Our plan is box three times this year - end of August or early September, then December.
"We've got a base in America already. We'd rather the fight was in the UK but we're not bothered if it has to be in America. No problem."
Hearn had previously told Sky Sports that negotiations to pit Joshua against Wilder must "find middle ground between reality and fantasy", and has now warned that the American would have to settle for less than 50 percent of the purse.
Asked if beating Parker would affect negotiations with Wilder, Hearn replied: "[It makes it] more difficult, because if you go to the negotiating table with three belts instead of one, then you want an increase in the pie."
Wilder, who is unbeaten in 39, will make the seventh defence of his WBC title in March against Luis Ortiz, who has not tasted defeat in 28 fights.
"Wilder is in a real fight against Ortiz, and victory would give him more value than he has at the moment," Hearn said.
"We have to give respect to Wilder because he's having a proper fight.
"I believe he will beat Ortiz. It depends how he wins. If he comes through a war, those fights can take a lot out of you. If he wins impressively, he sends out a good statement.
"Everyone is going in the right direction."
Victory for Ortiz, who boxed twice under Hearn's banner, would affect Joshua's progress because "there will be a rematch clause which would mess things up".
Joshua's three-fight plan for 2018 is likely to include Alexander Povetkin, the mandatory challenger to his WBA belt.
Hearn explained: "[The WBA are likely] to call it in the summer, so maybe [fight in] December.
"Financially, [Povetkin's promoters] have stated that they would rather come to the UK. We won't be going to Russia.
"At some point in 2018, it is likely [Joshua] will have to fight Povetkin. We'll see when."
Povetkin, whose only career defeat came against Wladimir Klitschko in 2013, has been offered a spot on the Joshua-Parker undercard and Liverpool contender David Price claims he has "agreed to take the fight".
Watch the Anthony Joshua vs Joseph Parker world heavyweight title unification fight, from Principality Stadium, Cardiff, on March 31, live and exclusive on Sky Sports Box Office.