The Friday Five: December 22, 2017

1. Mayweather Denies UFC Negotiations

Hours after UFC president Dana White claimed to be in “real” talks with retired boxer Floyd Mayweather, Mayweather shot down the rumors that he started.

In an interview with FightHype, Mayweather said people misconstrued what he said last week about the UFC. He didn’t say he was going to compete in MMA — he said he could make a billion dollars in the UFC if he chose to. But that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s something he will be doing.

“Exactly what I said is this: If I could make over a billion dollars before, I could do it again,” Mayweather said.

“If I chose to get in the UFC and fight three fights or fight four fights and then fight Conor McGregor, I could make a billion dollars. Which I can. I could do it in three fights or even four fights — I could make a billion dollars. If I choose to get in the Octagon and fight.”

2. Hearn: Parker Demands Are Realistic, Wilder’s Are Not

IBF, IBO, WBA heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua is looking to unify the heavyweight division in 2018, and it seems his first crack is coming against WBO champion Joseph Parker.

The two fighters’ teams have been negotiating for a fight either in late March or early April, and may have an announcement made by the beginning of the year.

What has held up any momentum of a fight between Joshua and either Parker of WBC champion Deontay Wilder, has been the financial split requested by both men.

For Parker, it started near 40% and has come down to a 65-35% split in favor of Joshua, and will more than likely end up being a 70-30% split when a contract is signed.

“We have to get our hands on another championship belt. Joseph Parker is being very realistic in terms of when he’s going to fight and negotiations,” Joshua said, according to Stuff.

3. Hearn Has Three Dates for Joshua-Parker

The two sides are looking to close the biggest divide that has stalled a deal, the financial split each fighter was to earn for the fight. The original split pitched by Parker and promoter David Higgins was a 50-50 split, but it went quickly to 60-40, and now Parker’s team have made it clear they are holding firm on 65-35 to make the fight happen.

Hearn is scouting several potential dates in the months of March and April, with numerous venues under consideration.

4. Parker Claims He Has Blueprint to Defeat Joshua

Parker has made it known frequently that Joshua is way too muscular to deal with a good boxer who gives angles and uses movement,Parker plans prove his theory correct when they eventually face off in 2018.

“Coming into the fight I will be a lot lighter. I think angles … angles and speed. Joshua is a big guy with a lot of power who comes forward and chase you down, but if I give him angles and movement it will give him a bit of trouble so that’s what I’m looking to do,” Parker told T2T Boxing.

5. If Fury Wants to Fight Lets Rock & Roll

Fury last saw the ring in September 2015 when he defeated Wladimir  Klitschko, and has had well publicized issues with drugs, a now backdated two year suspension from UK Anti-Doping, and the loss of his boxing license.

The Manchester-born Fury is still  awaiting a January hearing of the British Boxing Board of Control to return his professional license, but he has spent the last week telling Joshua, in several interviews and on social media, that he will be back soon to retake the titles he was forced to give up.

Speaking at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year on December 17th, Joshua told reporters that he’d notheard Fury’s latest claim that he was just a muscle-bound “carthorse” and these taunts were just “what I deal with in my industry”.

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