What does Hearn’s DAZN deal mean for Joshua?

Eddie Hearn confirmed on Thursday a new five-year partnership between Matchroom Boxing and DAZN which now includes the UK – but how does it affect Anthony Joshua?

Hearn and Joshua have enjoyed a hugely successful promoter/fighter partnership since AJ turned professional on the back of his gold medal at the 2012 London Olympics. And until Thursday, they’d also both had a long broadcast partnership with Sky Sports.

But while Hearn’s new deal means Matchroom’s UK shows will now air on DAZN and not Sky, that pact does not include Joshua.

The reigning IBF, WBA and WBO world heavyweight champion has one fight left on his existing deal with Sky Sports. That is likely to be against former cruiserweight king Oleksandr Usyk in August.

After that there will likely be a massive scramble to worth with Joshua – with Hearn admitting that DAZN will absolutely be a part of that scramble.

Hearn on Joshua broadcast contract

Clarifying the Joshua situation he told the DAZN Boxing Show: “AJ still has a fight remaining with Sky Sports – he’s not part of this deal, this announcement.

“We’ll look at the future with Anthony Joshua and 258 Management and decide which broadcaster to align to. Of course DAZN are gonna want to be a player with Anthony Joshua.

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“When we came to the US, I remember Oscar (De La Hoya) and those guys saying ‘pay-per-view is dead’. I don’t believe that is necessarily the case long-term.

New DAZN deal will mean less PPV – Hearn

“What I do feel very passionately about is that if the investment is there from the broadcaster, we won’t have to continue to do as many pay-per-view events, because it will limite the viewership, it will frustrate the fans.

“If you look at the US schedule – Lopez/Kambosos, Gervonta against Barrios,  Wilder against Fury, Jake Paul against whatever was announced yesterday (Tyron Woodley), Pacquiao against Errol Spence – that’s five pay-per-views in I think the next six or seven weeks in the US.

“That’s not good for boxing, that’s not giving fight fans value for money. So one thing which you will see in the UK is unrivalled value for money for fight fans.”