Wilder-Fury Arbitrator Relied On Previous Lennox Lewis Rematch Ruling
On Monday came the blockbuster news that the arbitrator who had heard arguments from both Deontay Wilder and WBC Heavyweight champion Tyson Fury had ruled in the “Bronze Bomber’s” favor to enforce the existing contract with a rematch clause for a third fight between the two. And, we’re now beginning to learn more about what the arbitrator based his decision on in large part.
Boxing Insider Dan Rafael reported Monday night that former Federal Judge Daniel Weinstein heard argument from Wilder side with legal precedence from former Undisputed Heavyweight champion Lennox Lewis successfully arguing in 2001 that his rematch clause with Hasim Rahman was to be enforced,
#FuryJoshua deal in doubt after @BronzeBomber wins arbitration case. My story, which quotes from ruling, is here but please also subscribe to posts as soon as they're published! https://t.co/okLguTbACE #FuryWilder3 #boxing @trboxing @BobArum @KornerMan44 @EddieHearn @Tyson_Fury
— Dan Rafael (@DanRafael1) May 18, 2021
Rafael had a source read the nine-page ruling to him that Weinstein made and he apparently repeatedly references Lewis vs. Rahman 2001 throughout it. As we wrote about previously, Rahman stunned the boxing world with one right hand knocking out Lewis in April of 2001, And, then, he wanted to ignore the mandatory rematch clause in the contract with Lewis to make roughly three times more money than he had made in the first Lewis fight to instead fight an aging Mike Tyson.
Lewis successfully argued in Federal Court in New York that the rematch should not just be enforced on the basis of what’s in the contract specified, but also because at the age of 35, his age and diminishing skills meant that having to wait longer for whatever happened with the potential Rahman-Tyson fight would irreparably harm his boxing career and financial gain. The court sided with Lewis, he got the rematch later in 2001 and kayoed Rahman with a single shot to regain his titles.
Wilder is in a similar position, as he is also 35 years old, hasn’t fought in 15 months, and is facing the very real possibility that if the arbitrator had not ruled his way, that Fury was never going to fight him, again.
On a special edition of our “Big Fight Weekend Podcast” released Monday night, sports law legal analyst, Dan Lust of the Geragos Law Firm talked to us about the next legal steps that Wilder will likely need to take. Hear us by clicking below,
Lust makes clear that Wilder needs to go to court and get an order reinforcing the arbitrator’s ruling. However, as he also told us, Tyson Fury doesn’t really have a legitimate argument that somehow the arbitrator’s ruling is wrong or improper on rematch clause enforcement.
And, even worse for Fury’s side, according to Rafael’s reporting, his source relayed Weinstein in his ruling “was not impressed with the arguments Fury side put forth” or come back to the Wilder side assertion of the Lewis case that the rematch clause should be enforced.
So, now we wait for things to move very quickly towards a third Fury-Wilder fight that will likely be in Las Vegas, and likely, at Allegiant Stadium, the football venue for the Las Vegas Raiders. There, promoters and organizers could easily have 30-40,000 or more fans and a large live gate to help off-set the financial guarantees.