Bob Arum has blasted an arbitrator's reported decision to force a trilogy fight between Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder as "preposterous."
Retired judge Daniel Weinstein ruled in favour of Deontay Wilder on Monday in an ongoing dispute involving the the two heavyweights, according to multiple reports.
Fury's planned unification bout with fellow Brit Anthony Joshua could now be in doubt, as Weinstein's ruling states that Wilder is owed a third fight against Fury after the "Bronze Bomber" lost the WBC heavyweight title to the now 32-year-old in February 2020.
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Unclear what this means for Fury-Joshua, which has been penciled in for August 14th. It's boxing -- you can't make people fight. But Fury can be sued for breach of contract if he moves ahead with the AJ fight and/or have his WBC title stripped. Lot of moving parts.— Chris Mannix (@SIChrisMannix) May 17, 2021
Fury and Wilder first met in December 2018, fighting to a draw. Their rematch in February 2020 saw Fury claim the WBC title in convincing fashion, and a third bout was set for July of that year before being scrapped due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Multiple attempts to get the duo into the ring in late 2020 were also scuttled, and eventually Fury's attention turned to a bout with IBF, WBA (super), and WBO heavyweight title-holder Joshua.
Talks with Joshua progressed to the point that Fury himself said over the weekend that their unification bout — the first of two expected between the two men — was set for August 14 in Saudi Arabia.
However, Monday's reported ruling sets a Sept. 15, 2021, deadline on a Fury-Wilder trilogy fight, which casts serious doubt on the Joshua vs. Fury timeline as it stands.
Hours after the reports first surfaced, Fury representative Arum told Chris Mannix that he was "terribly disappointed" by the decision. Despite the setback, Arum said Joshua vs. Fury could potentially still go on as planned with Wilder taking on the winner later in the year.
Bob Arum calls the arbitrators ruling on Fury-Wilder a "preposterous decision." Says the plan is to move ahead with Fury-Joshua in August and try to sell Wilder on facing the winner in November/December.— Chris Mannix (@SIChrisMannix) May 17, 2021