Senior Boxing Journalist @JamesDielhenn
Anthony Joshua vs Tyson Fury? Deontay Wilder has 'not communicated' willingness to waive right to a rematch
Top Rank: "We are obligated to the Wilder camp and we are concentrating on that"
Last Updated: 08/04/20 3:28pm
Tyson Fury's camp have "not heard" Deontay Wilder would step aside to allow an undisputed championship fight against Anthony Joshua.
IBF, WBA and WBO heavyweight champion Joshua would be "extremely interested" in facing the new WBC holder Fury, according to his promoter Eddie Hearn, if Wilder is "willing to take that step-aside money".
But Wilder is fully committed to a third fight with Fury, according to the Brit's US-based promoters Top Rank.
Asked if a deal could be struck with Wilder to waive his right, Top Rank president Todd DuBoef exclusively told Sky Sports: "I have not personally had any conversations about that. It is not on my radar.
"I am working with Wilder's representatives on coming up with new potential dates in late-summer or early-fall for the Fury fight. We are speaking about potential venues too.
"That fight breaking up as a result of [Joshua vs Fury] fight? I have not been privy to any conversations about that. I have not heard that they are willing to step aside. Nobody has communicated that."
Fury dismantled Wilder in a one-sided second fight in February, 14 months after they drew their first meeting.
The trilogy, which Wilder is entitled to, has been postponed due to coronavirus and is now targeted for October.
Joshua will meanwhile defend his belts against Kubrat Pulev with a date still being finalised.
"We are contractually obligated to Wilder at this point. Pulev and Joshua are contracted," DuBoef said.
"There is too much uncertainty across the board, with everything, to speculate on [Joshua vs Fury] happening. In a perfect world without this virus then I could possibly see a path [to Joshua vs Fury] but right now I don't see it.
"We are obligated to the Wilder camp and we are concentrating on that.
"It is so cloudy even with two matches but to make a third match? That's even cloudier. It's really hard to see through the clutter to see [Joshua vs Fury]."
The ongoing pandemic could disrupt the traditional locations and markets for major boxing, DuBoef believes.
"Does the UK or the US recover quicker? In the US will the hotspots like New York or California recover? What parts of the world will this pandemic be more under control?
"This is all connected to the global healing which will dictate the locations that we all do events in.
"The wheels are in motion [for Fury and Wilder's third fight], we've put our flag in the ground for a date hoping that between now and then, the dust will have settled and we are all working to a system that is tested and proved.
"We have to be nimble and flexible to see how this plays out because there is a lot of uncertainty.
"The new normal will be established eventually, everybody is champing at the bit."
Joshua's promoter Hearn had previously told Sky Sports: "The situation is a little bit out of our hands in that, if [Fury's promoter] Bob Arum and [Wilder's adviser] Al Haymon can talk and make Wilder wait a little bit, we would absolutely love to go into that fight next.
"A lot of it depends on Wilder. If he's willing to take that step-aside money. That's a conversation to be had with Bob Arum and Al Haymon to see if that's even possible.
"If it was possible and there was a way to make Pulev wait, which I think is probably an easier job, then for sure, I think Joshua would be extremely interested in moving straight into the Fury fight. I think in an ideal world, we have that fight next.
"It's always been the case, but if we can fight Pulev in July, we'd love to fight Fury in November, December. At the same time, I think there's so much uncertainty at the moment, this is the kind of situation that might make people say - 'I think now is the time.'
"Wouldn't it be great to bounce back to our sport with a fight like that secured, cemented. I can't tell you there's been conversations about it, but it's definitely something that I've thought about and if Mr Arum can come back to us and say, 'I've spoken to Deontay Wilder and yes, there is a deal to be done, or let them work that out, and let's talk.'
"I don't think [Joshua vs Fury] is a difficult fight to make, I really don't.
"Ultimately if Wilder won't step aside, there's no conversation to be had. I'll let them have that conversation. If they come back to me and say, 'look, I think we can get him to step aside,' let's talk, and let's try and make it happen."