UFC boss Dana White is expected to be ringside for unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua’s big fight against WBO titleholder Joseph Parker next weekend. And he’s bringing his chequebook.
A report in The Telegraph says that White is looking to expand his role in combat sports to include boxing with a proposed deal for Joshua that could net the British star up to $500 USD million.
The 28-year-old Joshua insists he is committed to his current promoter Eddie Hearn but said the pair would be prepared to listen to White’s proposition.
“Oh yeah, 100 per cent,” said Joshua, 20-0 (20). “I’m interested because we can all work together. Mine and Eddie’s relationship is a really good working relationship. I’m sure Eddie has an interest in working with Dana White. If it’s good business, it makes sense.
“I’m sure Eddie’s not going to say, ‘Dana White, we’re not interested in working with you,’ when we don’t know what’s on the table. We’ll listen and, 100 per cent, if it makes sense, we’re all in. I’m happy that Dana White is coming into the game and hopefully he can add some excitement, progress forward, make some good money and make some good fights.”
The affable Hearn joked that a trade offer between the two sports might be the way forward.
“If Dana White wants to speak to us, obviously Anthony’s with us (but) we’re willing to talk to anybody and we do great business with everyone,” Hearn said. “We work with anyone, if the business is right. In the meantime, I’ll sign (UFC lightweight champion) Conor McGregor and it’ll be fair.”
If White can work out a deal with Hearn and Joshua it would be a massive coup for the UFC president who has shown an interest in getting into the boxing market after the phenomenal financial success of last year’s crossover bout between McGregor and Floyd Mayweather Jr.