Arum Against Giving Wilder, Pulev Step-Aside Money
Is it that easy for fighters to step away from a huge fight for another one to happen? According to Top Rank’s Bob Arum, that doesn’t appear to be the case.
Due to the coronavirus, several fights have been postponed. A trilogy fight between Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury has been pushed back to November or December. Anthony Joshua v. Kubrat Pulev, set for June, has been pushed to a time to be determined. At this point, an undisputed heavyweight title fight might not be a possibility until 2021 the earliest.
Speaking on SiriusXM’s “At The Fights’, Arum went over an idea that has been brought to multiple parties. There has been a discussion about potentially going straight to a Joshua-Fury bout, with the United Kingdom or Saudi Arabia as a possibility. That would require both Wilder and Pulev to take money to stay clear for the foreseeable future. Arum doesn’t think that is possible at all.
“To talk about paying Wilder or paying Pulev step-aside money is at this point ludicrous,” Arum stated, via Boxing Scene. “I mean, we are not the United States mint, that can print money and distribute it – you know, $2 trillion, or, you know money hard to imagine. We can’t do that. Who’s gonna pay the step-aside money? I mean, where’s it coming from? It’s nice to say, ‘Hey, pay step-aside [money].’ Who the hell is gonna pay it? Right? So, you know, let’s look forward to a Fury-Wilder fight, a Joshua-Pulev fight.”
Both Pulev and Wilder’s team have since rejected the idea, stating their separate fights are signed and ready to go. One thing to consider, however, is that Arum is not ready to put on events with Wilder or Fury as long as no fans are inside the building. It is unknown when boxing will be able to make its full return, but Arum is hoping for the summer.
Regardless of the money factors and how long we have to wait, Arum is willing to give Fury and Wilder the chance to finish their series. The rematch was a rating hit, and Arum is hoping to repeat that the third time around.
“Look, Deontay Wilder gave Fury two opportunities to fight for the title, and we don’t forget that,” Arum went on to say. “One, he selected Fury for the fight that was in Los Angeles [in December 2018]. And then after it was a draw – I thought Fury won, but they called it a draw – he signed on to give Fury a [second] shot, which was the fight in February in Las Vegas. We also have a contract with the Wilder people, which guarantees him a third fight. So, what we’re thinking is to do that fight. We’re making plans on how to do it. It would certainly not be until sometime in the fourth quarter of this year.”
Arum also went on to say that he can see a small change in the undisputed title situation. He predicts Pulev can beat Joshua, adding to an already interesting situation.