WBA, IBF and WBO heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua 22-0 (21) turned down a USD $80 million deal to face American WBC counterpart Deontay Wilder 40-0 (39).
That’s the word according to lineal heavyweight champion Tyson Fury 29-0 (17).
Speaking on The Joe Rogan Experience Podcast ahead of his December 1 bout against Wilder, Fury revealed details of the deal.
“I know some quite close details on that,” said Fury. “The details is: Wilder’s team offered Joshua’s team £61 million (USD $80 million) for a two-fight deal.
“£38 million (USD $50 million) for the first fight and £23 million (USD $30 million) for the rematch if Joshua lost. And they declined that.
“And my lawyer, Robert Davis, he saw proof of funds from Al Haymon.
“So Eddie Hearn and his chum buddies can say all this, that and the other. But I know the truth because proof of funds was seen.”
The self-styled ‘Gypsy King’ believes there is little chance of Joshua and his promoter Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Boxing coming to the party and making a fight with him for all of the heavyweight titles if he is victorious over ‘The Bronze Bomber’.
“It’s about money. Keeping the golden goose laying them eggs and looking after it,” said Fury. “The thing is with Anthony Joshua, he’s an Olympic gold medallist and in the UK he’s a massive star. He sells out stadiums; 70,000, 90,000 [people]. Huge star. So why would you want to get him beat by somebody nobody has really heard of?
“They took the risk in the [Wladimir] Klitschko fight. It almost didn’t pay off. They scraped through by the skin of their teeth. But he done it, fair play.
“He got off the canvas, showed a champion’s heart to get off to come back and knockout Klitschko. Fair play.
“But since then, they haven’t remotely stepped up at all. They fought Joseph Parker and he didn’t knock Joseph Parker out. He didn’t even hurt Joseph Parker.
“He fought Carlos Takam, had a hard fight with him. So they’re just keeping that money train going. And I don’t blame them, because this is a business at the end of the day.
“And if I was his management team I’d say: ‘Stay away from Fury, stay away from Wilder and we’ll just fight the rest of the people and keep making plenty of money. Why do we need to fight these guys who are very risky for maybe a little more than we’re getting now, two times more? But in the long run, we can have five more fights and not get beat by mediocre people?’.”
Joshua is not due back in the ring until April next year when he is expected to take on the winner of the December 22 rematch between Dillion Whyte and Dereck Chisora.