“I actually feel we’ve done the hard part. Speaking for myself, Anthony, and his team at 258 Management, I know how hard we’ve worked these last couple of months and I just feel that this fight is so big it’s not a difficult sell.”
As ESPN reports, now the the terms of the deal are set, principals can solicit offers from prospective sites. Saudi Arabia, where Joshua avenged his loss against Andy Ruiz during the December 2019 rematch, is one option, and it’s also where Hearn secured a tidy site fee of US$40 million plus. The publication notes that the need for a huge site fee becomes “particularly acute” given the seating restrictions and economic impacts of the global pandemic. “We’d like to get a site deal in the next month,” said Hearn.
“We’ve already had approaches from eight or nine sites. The offers have come from multiple countries in the Middle East, from Asia, Eastern Europe, and America. This is the biggest fight in boxing and one of the biggest sporting events in the world. It will be a major, major win for a country that wants to showcase itself.”
In seeing the two champions come together, it means the WBA, IBF, WBO and WBC title are now on track to become unified this coming year. In addition to the signatures of Fury, 32, and Joshua, 31, other signees reportedly include:
Eddie Hearn himself (Joshua’s promoter and manager)
Top Rank (Fury’s American promoter)
Queensberry (Fury’s English promoter)
As well as the Dubai-based MTK (Fury’s management company)
As for how much Joshua and Fury are pocketing, it’s expected to be a base figure of around $180 million each, along with a 50-50 purse split for the first fight, followed by a 60-40 purse split in the rematch (with the lion’s share going to the winner). Should all things go to plan, Joshua could even double his entire net worth.
The fights are expected to take place in July of 2021, with the rematch then scheduled for November or December. “One of the fascinations about this fight will be the buildup because they’re two totally different characters, two totally different personalities,” said Hearn.
“The mind games will be on another level for this fight. Tyson is very good at that. Anthony is excited by that.”