The highly anticipated showdown between seven-division world champion Amanda Serrano and undisputed 135-pound champion Katie Taylor appeared to be in danger of being postponed or canceled when Serrano’s manager and trainer refused to accept a pay cut for his fighter because of COVID-19.
Jordan Maldonado said that Serrano was offered only half her contracted purse because there would be no live audience to provide revenue via ticket sales. Now, Matchroom Boxing’s Eddie Hearn says the fight will indeed happen and that neither fighter will have to take a pay cut.
"Absolute rubbish," Hearn said of Maldonado's statement during a recent appearance on "Ak & Barak" on DAZN. "There was absolutely no offer."
Hearn said that there were ongoing discussions about how fighter pay would be handled but those conversations didn't produce anything formal. He decided after careful consideration that both women would receive their full pay and the fight would be targeted for August.
"The fight is on," Hearn said. "It's no secret that we don’t have a crowd anymore and that fight was supposed to take place in front of 15,000 people at Manchester Arena on the same card as Dillian Whyte vs. Alexander Povetkin.
"All of a sudden, all of that revenue that would have been generated from that crowd doesn’t exist anymore. I spoke to Lou DiBella (Serrano's promoter) and said, 'Listen, if you want to box now with no crowds, maybe we have a new offer for you. Maybe there will be a percentage reduction on your purse. It’s nothing personal, it’s business.'"
Hearn said he had a similar conversation with Taylor about waiting until crowds are allowed back into arenas, but Taylor declined and was interested in getting back into the ring sooner than later. Instead of shuttering one of the biggest matches in women's boxing history, Hearn decided to move forward with it.
"Good news for Amanda Serrano, she gets her full purse, and we can all look forward to one of the biggest fights of all time in women’s boxing," Hearn said. He suggested an announcement would come later in the week.