- Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder will fight for the second time on February 22, 2020, Dan Rafael of ESPN reports.
- The first bout generated 325,000 pay-per-view buys in the US but Fury’s promoter Frank Warren has told Business Insider that the dealmakers involved in the rematch expect a 515% increase.
- Warren also said that he expects Fury to win, to then unify all of the heavyweight championship belts, and then fight Wilder a third time to conclude their historic heavyweight rivalry.
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That is the opinion of Fury’s promoter Frank Warren, who told Business Insider before Wilder defeated Luis Ortiz by seventh round knockout on Saturday that he expects his fighter to be the first to beat Wilder, unify all of the heavyweight championship titles, and even fight Wilder a third time to conclude their rivalry.
Fury and Wilder have already fought once before, a dramatic 2018 bout which featured a masterclass in boxing by Fury but an exhibition of brutal power by Wilder, who knocked Fury down twice, earning a disputed draw by the judges at ringside.
The former two-weight world champion boxer Carl Frampton recently told Business Insider that Fury “won the fight convincingly the first time [and] most people think the same.”
Warren agreed with Frampton, and said: “Fury won that fight, it was not a good decision at all time. I fancied the fight and fancied him to beat him.
“But he had to lose nearly 11 stone [since returning to boxing after a battle against depression]. He wasn’t training to fight, he was training to lose weight. But now he’s training to fight.”
Warren is confident of success in the rematch, and anticipates a trilogy bout. “I believe Tyson beats Wilder. Who knows, there might be another fight there.”
Wilder vs. Fury 2 could generate 2 million pay-per-view buys
Sources involved with the rematch negotiations had oft confirmed a rematch deal to Business Insider in the last few months, and on Wednesday the senior boxing writer Dan Rafael confirmed a February 22 fight on ESPN.
The only hold-up to a formal announcement for the heavyweight do-over is that dealmakers are yet to agree on a suitable site, according to ESPN, even though the MGM Grand in Las Vegas is an apparent front-runner to host.
The event would be a joint pay-per-view between Fury’s broadcaster ESPN and Fox, which is the network Wilder fights on.
Fury has fought twice on ESPN this year, against opponents who were considered easy, or straight-forward, opponents before the contests took place.
Fury knocked out Tom Schwarz in the second round before overcoming a bloody cut that needed 47 stitches to outpoint Otto Wallin on the scorecards.
It begged the question why an opponent ranked in the top 10 was not considered for these fights, ahead of the big Wilder rematch.
Warren said this was all planned to allow ESPN to build Fury’s name and brand value in the US. The first Wilder bout generated 325,000 pay-per-view sales in the US, but with the recent exposure Fury has had, Warren anticipates a 515% increase of PPV buys for the second fight next year.
“The deal with Tyson was to get on a big platform,” Warren said. “The biggest platform in the States that made sense for us was ESPN+.
“There’s 3 million subscribers, it’s a big platform, and a couple fights make his profile higher. So, by the time the rematch happens with Wilder, the thing will go through the roof and we’ll be looking at 2 million pay-per-view buys in the States.”
Tyson Fury is ‘a boxing genius’
Wilder has recently won praise for the fight-ending power he possesses in his right hand, dropping and stopping Ortiz with a straight right last weekend.
But Fury, too, is as good a technical and defensive boxer as Wilder is a power puncher. “Fury’s awkward, got a great boxing brain, fast hands, and fast feet,” Warren said. “He takes people by surprise. Throws punches in awkward angles and he reads fights. He can read a fight very well. He’s a boxing genius. For a heavyweight to be that light on his feet is quite amazing.”
The heavyweight championship landscape is currently fractured, with Wilder possessing the WBC title while Andy Ruiz Jr. holds the WBA, WBO, and IBF belts.
There is currently great speculation over who can be the one to unify all the titles, and be the recognised, undisputed heavyweight champion out of all the title holders and contenders like Fury, Wilder, Ruiz Jr., and Anthony Joshua.
“If anyone’s going to unify the belts, Fury’s definitely the man to do it,” Warren said.