Earlier this week, WBC heavyweight champ Deontay Wilder made public that he will fight Dominic Breazeale upcoming in May. Now, comes a Friday afternoon report that the man Wilder really wanted to fight, Britain’s Tyson Fury, will make his debut on ESPN+ streaming service this June.
The “Worldwide Leader’s” boxing insider, Dan Rafael, broke the story that Fury has a date of June 15th and an opponent now set:
The return of @Tyson_Fury will come against Tom Schwarz on June 15 in Las Vegas. My story: https://t.co/3jYSFPczsL #boxing @trboxing @CarlMoretti @bradleyajacobs @frankwarren_tv @MTKGlobal @BobArum @KornerMan44 @MarkKriegel @JoeTessESPN
— Dan Rafael (@danrafaelespn) March 22, 2019
Rafael’s source confirming that it’s an unknown non-highly ranked fighter from Germany, Tom Schwartz (24-0), instead of the Wilder rematch, and he is going to be met with apathy at best.
Yes, Fury’s debut was expected to be a “tune up” after Top Rank signed him on last month and road-blocked the potential rematch that had already basically been agreed to between Fury and Wilder camps.
While it’s a very low-risk fight for Fury, it also cannot have much appeal particularly in the United States, where Fury is not much of a big draw to begin with. Add on, this an opponent that is a virtual unknown, who has only fought mainly in Germany and twice in the Czech Republic. So, it’s clear that it’s a mis-match for the opportunity to fight Wilder later. That’s, if that can be worked out this fall.
Wilder and Fury fought a hotly-contested, controversial draw last December 1st in Los Angeles. The WBC champion knocked Fury down in the final minute of the fight (above), but could not finish him off. And, the decision was split three ways from the judges.
While Fury deserves great credit for having come off essentially a three-year layoff, and fighting that well and admirably against Wilder to not be knocked out, there’s only so much mileage he can get out of that at the moment.
This is particularly, when Wilder is content to fight his mandatory challenger Breazeale, and if he wins impressively, then “draw the line in the sand” to make Fury come fight Wilder on his financial terms. Wilder would potentially want that on Showtime Pay-per-View, again, this fall.
As was previously reported, Wilder was offered a multi-fight deal from Arum/Top Rank that included the Fury rematch for this fall. And, he was also recently offered a multi-fight deal by DAZN streaming service and Matchroom Boxing, which handles the promotion for the WBA, IBF, and WBO Heavyweight Champion, Anthony Joshua. That DAZN deal reportedly included a $40 million guarantee to fight Joshua this fall, and possibly even, in the United States.
Wilder turned both deals down.
Joshua will fight two weeks earlier than this reported Tyson Fury date of June 15th. That’s when the former British gold medalist will debut at Madison Square Garden against unbeaten, but lightly regarded New Yorker, Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller, in the latest defense of his titles.
For now, the 30-year old Fury is still on the outside looking in for another mega-fight against Wilder or Joshua. And it’s likely that this fight, even if he scores an impressive win, won’t do much to help his leverage with either.