Fury Usyk is all set apart from one detail
Top Rank CEO Bob Arum confirms that the only question mark left in the Fury Usyk bout is the venue, and that the Middle East is leading the race
In the long awaited unification bout between Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk, the last hurdle left to surmount is the venue. In speaking to Sky Sports in the UK, Top Rank CEO Bob Arum confirmed that the two camps are looking at multiple sites and that in that race to host what is sure to be the biggest fight in the last two decades, the Middle East is out in front of the pack.
“I’m very optimistic the fight is going to happen,” said Arum. “Both fighters have agreed to do the fight, the question is the site and we’re talking to the Middle East because allegedly they’re going to come up with the biggest purse ever in boxing history. And if they do, that’s where the fight is going to go because money is money. If they don’t, both fighters will agree to do the fight this spring at Wembley. But the fight will happen in my opinion, certainly within the first four months of the year.
“Fighters want to do the best for themselves because a fighter’s career, no matter how great he is, is limited and they want to make as much money as possible. So that’s the only issue - where will the fight be held? I would believe in the next week that will be determined and then we’ll have an official announcement of the date and site for the fight - but that fight is happening.”
In recent years, Saudi Arabia has emerged as a favored venue in boxing, despite the clear moral issues that most fans have with their human rights abuses and misogynistic system. Arum has not specified which Middle Eastern countries are in the running, but did add that if the current favorite did not pan out, that London’s Wembley Stadium would be on the cards.
“To do 95,000 people in Wembley, which we did for the Dillian Whyte fight, a lot of my friends who went to that fight said it was one of the greatest, if not their greatest, experience going to an athletic event,” said Arum, referring to Tyson Fury’s defense of his title against Dillian Whyte.
“Now, if it’s a unification match between Tyson and Usyk, it’ll be even more spectacular.”
Tyson Fury holds the WBC belt, while Oleksandr Usyk is the WBA, WBO, and IBF champion. The winner of this much-anticipated bout would unify the heavyweight division for the first time in nearly a quarter century. The last time the belts were unified was in 1999, when Lennox Lewis defeated Evander Holyfield and became the undisputed heavyweight king.
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