Is Joshua-Wilder on? Sources have informed BoxingAfrica.com that WBA/IBF/WBO world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua and WBC counterpart Deontay Wilder are close to announcing a unification bout to take place this Fall.
Matchroom Sport promoter Eddie Hearn, who promotes Joshua, and Wilder’s team, which consists of adviser Al Haymon, manager Shelley Finkel and promoter Lou DiBella, have engaged in heavy negotiations over the past few weeks.
Hearn initially offered Wilder $12.5 million to fight Joshua in the U.K. The American heavyweight balked at the offer. Days later, Joshua informed the press that if he was guaranteed $50 million, he would accept the fight.
A week after Joshua’s proclamation, Wilder sent an offer to Team Joshua that included the $50 million dollar guarantee for a bout that would take place in the United States between September and December, at a venue of Wilder’s choosing.
It is believed that Joshua wants the fight in the UK but, with the addition of US pay-per-view, the bout would be worth more in the US. This has been the primary hold-up.
Barry Hearn, father of Eddie and chairman of Matchroom, recently stated he would advise Joshua to hold off on taking the bout. If Joshua takes his advice, we would not see the fight until 2019.
However, two independent sources have informed BoxingAfrica.com that most of the primary issues between the factions have been resolved. If in fact true, an announcement may come shortly.
Stay tuned for more details.