Top Rank supremo Arum is now leading negotiations for team Fury after controversial adviser Daniel Kinahan stepped back earlier this week. And Hearn – whose Matchroom Boxing promotes Joshua – says he spoke with the 88-year-old this week and that they are well on the road to a deal.
He told Sky Sports: “The bulk is done, the financial elements of the deal. There is always stuff that is out of our control, ie the fighters winning their next fights.
“Bob Arum and I had a good chat (on Thursday). We’re getting along alright. We have our words backwards and forwards but we both want to make the biggest fight of all time. He’s made many of them in the past and I want to make one that goes down in history as well.
“We’re all moving forwards. We talked about the site, the other elements of the deal and we agreed to move forwards by papering this. Dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s. Get this boxed in for 2021.”
Hearn and Fury (30-0-1) himself announced on June 10 that the structure of a two-fight deal for 2021 was in place, with a 50-50 split for the first fight and the winner getting a 60-40 advantage in the rematch.
Hearn and Arum have said multiple sites are keen to stage the fight – which would be the biggest in British history. They are likely to include Saudi Arabia, which staged Joshua’s rematch victory over Andy Ruiz Jr in December 2019.
As Hearn hinted, the biggest risk to the fight happening is the interim bouts both men have schedule – Fury a third meeting with Deontay Wilder (42-1-1) and Joshua (23-1) a showdown with IBF mandatory contender Kubrat Pulev (28-1) of Bulgaria.
Fury and Joshua may also have to deal with another fight each ahead of meeting each other – WBC mandatory contender Dillian Whyte is due a title shot by the end of February 2021, while the WBO says the Joshua/Pulev winner must face its mandatory Oleksandr Usyk (17-0) next.
Fury and Joshua currently hold all the major world heavyweight titles – Fury is the WBC and Ring magazine king as well as the lineal champion, while AJ holds the IBF, WBA and WBO belts.