Tyson Fury took to Instagram on Wednesday to express his displeasure with Anthony Joshua’s apparent refusal to accept step-aside money to allow an Oleksandr Usyk-Fury fight for full supremacy in the heavyweight division.
Fury claimed Joshua and Hearn, whose company promotes the British superstar, turned down a package worth $90 million to step aside. The unbeaten WBC heavyweight champion didn’t elaborate on how Joshua’s decision to decline the step-aside offer amounted to a $90 million misstep.
“Had to do this video,” a smiling Fury said in his trademark raspy voice. “Eddie Hearn and Anthony Joshua have gotta be the worstest-damn businessmen in history. Today they lost $90 million! God-damn son of a bitches! Crazy-ass!”
The purse bid for Fury’s mandated title defense against WBC interim champion Dillian Whyte was postponed again Wednesday, this time until Friday. That bought all parties involved two more days to voluntarily reach a suitable solution that would satisfy Fury, Usyk, Joshua and Whyte.
England’s Fury (31-0-1, 22 KOs) wants to face Ukraine’s Usyk (19-0, 13 KOs) in his next fight. As part of that agreement, Joshua reportedly would fight the winner in the subsequent bout for either Fury or Usyk. Joshua (24-2, 22 KOs) is contractually owed an immediate rematch with Usyk, who out-boxed the former IBF, IBO, WBA and WBO champ and upset him by unanimous decision September 25 at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London.
In that scenario, Whyte (28-2, 19 KOs), who already has sued the WBC for failing to enforce his status as its mandatory challenger, would have to wait at least two more fights to fight Fury, Usyk or Joshua.
The WBC allowed everyone involved Wednesday to push back the Fury-Whyte purse bid for the fourth time. The Mexico City-based WBC previously voted to approve the 80-20 purse split that Fury’s co-promoters, Bob Arum’s Top Rank Inc. and Frank Warren’s Queensberry Promotions, requested at its annual convention in mid-November.
The WBC typically requires 70-30 splits for mandated championship matches. If Joshua doesn’t step aside and the two sides are to avoid what would be a risky purse bid Top Rank and Queensberry, Whyte’s team wants better than an 80-20 split for the Jamaican-born, London-based contender to face Fury in what would be a high-profile fight anywhere in the United Kingdom.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.