By: Sean Crose
Ladies and gentlemen, we have a fight. Or it seems we should. Heck, we’d better have one, considering the fact that Tyson Fury co-promoter Frank Warren just put up over 41 million – that’s million – dollars for it via purse bid. The bout in question, of course, is the potential/likely showdown between longtime contender Dillian Whtyte and defending heavyweight titlist Tyson Fury. The all-British battle for Fury’s WBC and lineal heavyweight championships, should it now actually go down, will be held in Britain and will be a pay per view affair.
In total, Warren – along with Bob Arum’s Top Rank, which also promotes Fury – put up a jaw dropping, record breaking $41,025,000 for the pleasure of being the force behind a Fury-Whyte showdown. Eddie Hearn’s Matchroom boxing was runner up, with a $32,222,222 bid, which, it seems, is now a pittance when it comes to scenarios like this. The reason this potential match had gone to purse bid to begin with was because Fury’s and Whyte’s teams couldn’t come to an agreement. The WBC originally ordered an 80/20 split in favor or Fury, but Whyte and company weren’t having any of it.
And, unless something changes, Team Whyte still might not be having any of it. With that in mind, it must be said that the general split in these matters is 70/30, so Whyte would indeed be taking in less of a percentage than would be standard for a challenger were he to come around. On the other hand, there’s lots of money to be made in fighting Fury. Plus, were Whyte to win, the windfall would most likely be enormous. It’s also worth noting that Whyte has taken the WBC to court because he feels the organization has essentially not made his mandatory ranking mandatory.
With that in mind, there has been much talk of Fury possibly fighting heavyweight multititlist Oleksandr Usyk next in order to crown an undisputed heavyweight champion. Such things require lots of step aside money, however, as Whyte is indeed Fury’s mandatory and Usky is set to rematch Anthony Joshua, who he won his belts off of last fall. Suffice to say, an agreement couldn’t be made, and so Fury is to now focus on Whyte while a second match between Usyk and Joshua is made.
One thing rings certain after today’s events – Tyson Fury is seen as a very, very lucrative attraction by the sport’s powers that be.
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