Tyson Fury has denied that he ever paid any money to Daniel Kinahan and says the decision by the US Treasury to put $5 million bounty on the Irishman’s head has not proved a distraction ahead of Fury’s WBC heavyweight title defense against Dillian Whyte.
“It’s none of my business. I keep my own business to myself, that’s it,” was Fury’s reaction to questions about the news that Kinahan was a wanted man in the United States, having been accused of being at the head of an international drug smuggling and money-laundering gang, which was involved in murders.
Fury, of course, had namechecked Kinahan when he announced a deal had been agreed to face Anthony Joshua last year, a fight that fell through after Fury was ordered to have a third fight with Deontay Wilder. He has also been photographed with Kinahan, most recently just weeks ago in Dubai.
But, while saying that he will comply with any US Government restrictions, Fury says that Kinahan’s problems are not a concern to him.
“It’s got nowt to do with me, has it?” Fury said. “If I say there’s a war going on in Ukraine and people ask me about that, it’s got nowt to do with me. I keep my business to myself. I’ve got my own troubles to look after with six kids and a wife nagging me to death for not being at home to help with the kids.
“I’ve got a lot more to think about than other people’s business. In my life, I’ve got a man who wants to punch my face in next week and I’ve got to deal with that. Anything else is out of my control.
“I don’t really take any notice of the media. I know what the media can do and I was the victim of a witch-hunt in 2015 and 2016.”
But despite claims from Arum that Kinahan was paid consultancy fees for previous Fury fights, Fury said that was nothing to do with him and that he did not pay Kinahan any money.
“That’s Bob Arum’s own personal business what he does with his own money, he can spend it all on gummy bears if he wants to,” Fury said.
“What someone does with their money is out of my control.
“What a man does with his own money is none of my business. If he wants to give it to the poor man in the street, it’s none of my business.”
Fury was also asked about the absence of any logos for MTK Global on his team kit at the open workout at Wembley on Tuesday. The company is widely believed to have been jointly founded by Kinahan and acted as Fury’s management. But Fury said the logos had not been on his kit for the third fight with Wilder.
“This is a tracksuit that has been made for me to wear today and these are all my sponsors, that’s it,” he said. “I have never been sponsored by MTK ever.
“[The logo] was from 17 until 20, three years and that was it. Done. End of.
“Any more probing questions that you can think of to trip me up? Because you can't! There is nothing that I have to hide. Is there any more?”
Fury was then asked about the picture in February with Kinahan.
“A picture doesn’t mean I am a criminal?” he said. “I can’t control who is in the building. There could be a criminal in this building now. It doesn’t mean I am involved in his criminal activity, does it?”
Frank Warren also said that his company, Queensberry, had not paid money to Kinahan and neither did Kinahan have any involvement in Saturday’s show.
“Let me make it a couple of things very clear - one, Daniel Kinahan has nothing to do with this show and, two, as Tyson said, he was unaware of any payments made by Top Rank to Daniel Kinahan,” Warren said.
“We were unaware of any payments being made.”
Warren said he was concerned by the shadow that the Kinahan case was shining on the sport.
“I am concerned, but I’m also concerned about some of the misinformation that’s going around,” he said. “We’re not stupid people. All of us understand what has happened from the US Treasury.
“It’s been going on now for three years and we all know what we have to do and we will not be breaking the law. By the way, we’ve never broken the law.
“Is it a bad image for boxing? We’ve sold 94,000 tickets in a day or two days. Are we going to do the business on the pay-per-view? Yes we are. We’re very conscious of what we have to do as participants and guardians of the sport, but we’re not policemen.
“It’s only after last week that it’s actually come to something.”
Ron Lewis is a senior writer for BoxingScene. He was Boxing Correspondent for The Times, where he worked from 2001-2019 - covering four Olympic Games and numerous world title fights across the globe. He has written about boxing for a wide variety of publications worldwide since the 1980s.