The back and forth saga between WBA/IBF/WBO world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua and WBC world heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder is still ongoing.
On Monday June 11, Wilder (40-0, 39 KOs) accepted terms to fight Joshua (21-0, 20 KOs) in the UK. Matchroom Boxing’s Eddie Hearn, who promotes Joshua, promised to deliver the contract by the end of the week, citing timing concerns with delivering a venue for the bout.
However, Hearn did not send the paperwork–unseen before–until this past Monday night, June 18.
Wilder’s co-manager Shelley Finkel sent an email to Hearn asking for verification on two items. However, according to Finkel, he’s been waiting for three days without a response from Hearn.
“We looked at the contract on Monday and raised two specific details that we needed clarification of,” he said. “It’s frustrating as Eddie is stating that we need to be quick and sign, but how can we if they don’t respond to our email?”
Adding to the drama were Twitter comments from Hearn and Stephen Espinoza, President of Showtime Sports , on Thursday night. The Showtime network has aired Joshua’s last six bouts as well as the majority of Wilder’s most recent ones. It is expected that Joshua-Wilder will take place on Showtime in the US. However, Hearn may want to put it on DAZN, an app expected to launch this Fall. Last Month, Hearn signed a long-term deal to air fights on the app. Joshua is not expected to be part of this deal. Thus, Joshua-Wilder was not expected to be on DAZN.
But perhaps Hearn has had a change of heart? Regarding whether the fight would be on DAZN, Hearn responded by saying, “They [Team Wilder] don’t care.”
They don’t care
— Eddie Hearn (@EddieHearn) June 21, 2018
This prompted an immediate response from Espinoza.
Who is "they," Eddie?
Just curious…!ecause both Wilder and Showtime care very much, as you know. https://t.co/DVot3BeObh
— Stephen Espinoza (@StephenEspinoza) June 22, 2018
Hence, there seems to be a major hold-up with the fight. We expect that to be cleared in the next few days but whether the anticipated bout actually occurs is now anyone’s guess.