Usyk and Fury agree to fight – promoter
Bob Arum says the two men want to fight one another in their next bouts
WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury and WBA, IBF, WBO and IBO champion Aleksandr Usyk have agreed to face each other in an undisputed bout, according to Fury’s American promoter, Bob Arum.
Arum, who is the head of Top Rank, told Sky Sports that neither Fury nor Usyk will take any other fight before they meet in 2023.
“The two fighters have agreed to fight each other next,” Arum said to the British broadcaster.
“With Fury and Usyk we’re dealing with two adults, not a lot of [rubbish] back and forth. Usyk is a good friend of mine, he’s very intelligent and Tyson is Superman, both as an athlete and as an intellect.
“So they want the fight. Both of them want the fight and so there’ll be very little, if any, [messing] around. So we’ll be able to make that happen.
“I’m very, very confident. As I said the fighters have both agreed to fight each other next without any interim fights,” Arum added.
Arum explained that the only question which remains is “what’s the date and what’s the site,” with a UK or Saudi venue previously touted in the first few months of 2023.
“But that fight is definitely going to happen and it will happen in the first four months of next year. We are balancing a couple of significant offers from the Middle East and also there’s the possibility of doing the fight in the UK at Wembley [stadium] with a massive 95,000 crowd in attendance,” Arum explained.
“Fighters have a relatively short life and money is important. So if the money which has been proposed to us is real that has to be taken into consideration.”
“To go back to Wembley and do a fight before 95,000 people for me really stirs up the blood,” said Arum, who co-promoted Fury’s knockout win over domestic rival Dillian Whyte in April this year at the national English stadium. “It would be crazy. It would just be wonderful.”
According to Arum, a final decision shouldn’t be too long. “We’ll have it all sorted out,” Arum said, hoping to have a deal over the line “by the end of the year.”
Should it go ahead, a guaranteed box office smash between Fury and Usyk would crown the first undisputed heavyweight champion of the four-belt era.
In recent weeks, however, commissions such as the WBA have attempted to throw a spanner in the works by ordering Usyk to make a mandatory defense against Daniel Dubois.
In November, Fury said that a fight against Usyk was at the “top of the shopping list” in 2023 but he is also open to taking on WBO interim champion Joe Joyce at Wembley if it falls through.
After Fury carried out a routine win over Derek Chisora at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in early December, he called Usyk to ringside to scream obscenities in the Ukrainian’s face and challenge him to a showdown.