Just under a year on from that devastating false start in 2021, the two Brits are close to once again holding all the marbles in boxing’s heavyweight division.
Last May it was announced they would meet in August in Saudi Arabia with an eye-popping $155million site fee agreed. Then within 24 hours though Deontay Wilder won a legal ruling to force a trilogy fight with Fury, and the big all-British affair was off.
Then in September Joshua lost his IBF, WBA and WBO belts to Oleksandr Usyk in London, and we were back to square one. Worse in fact.
But fast forward six months and we are again just one step away from the biggest fight in British boxing history.
Fury (now 32-0-1) successfully came through that epic trilogy fight with Wilder, before impressively stopping fellow Brit Dillian Whyte at Wembley Stadium in April 2022. He remains the WBC, Ring magazine and lineal champion.
So now it is all down to Joshua (24-2), who is likely to rematch Usyk in July. Should he win, and become a three-time heavyweight champion, that Fury vs Joshua undisputed showdown would again be right back in focus.
Will Fury vs Joshua ever happen? Well there’s a chance right now, and in boxing it’s the hope that kills you…
Fury vs Joshua date and fight time
For now of course there is not set date. Any chance of the fight happening soon depends on the following scenario:
- Joshua defeats Usyk in July to regain the IBF, WBA and WBO titles
Then, and only then, can we really start thinking about the dream match. In theory a showdown in late 2022 would make sense. We can but dream.
As for the venue, you would have to think Saudi Arabia would be back at the table again after agreeing to pony up the biggest site fee in boxing history last year. Same again?
Fury vs Joshua TV channel and live stream
With both fighters signed to different networks, the TV broadcast would be the biggest remaining negotiation point after the venue.
Their current broadcast situation is as follows:
- Fury reportedly has a first/last/matching deal with BT Sport Boxing. All his fights since that 2018 comeback have aired on the network.
- Joshua is now a free agent after his current deal with Sky Sports ran out with the loss to Usyk. We now expect a massive scramble for his services.
- Fury has an exclusive deal with ESPN. The reported £80million five-fight pact has two bouts remaining. The first will be Fury’s title defence on December 5. The second in theory will be the first showdown with Joshua.
- Joshua has a matching rights deal with DAZN (subscription platform, $19,99 a month in the United States or $99 for one year ($149 from May 2022). Costs £7.99 per month in the UK.
Hearn’s decision to sign a huge five-year deal with DAZN in the UK (ending a long association with Sky) doesn’t affect things from a Fury vs Joshua broadcast perspective That is because the DAZN deal does not include Joshua or fellow heavyweight star Dillian Whyte.
Fury vs Joshua venue
It had been an open secret for some time that the first meeting between Fury and Joshua would likely take place in Saudi Arabia.
Should the fight be rekindled in the future that might not be the case. Don’t rule out the UK though with COVID seemingly a thing of the past in terms of ruining major sporting occasions.
Wembley Stadium was packed with 94,000 for Fury vs Whyte and it’s easy to see a similar scenario for a Fury vs Joshua fight. It would probably sell out three Wembleys…
Fury vs Joshua tickets
Joshua is a huge box office draw – all 67,000 tickets for his fight with Usyk sold out in a matter of hours.
Fury meanwhile sold out 94,000 tickets for the upcoming Whyte showdown – 85,000 in one day alone.
A Fury vs Joshua fight would be huge business, if it ever happens.
Fury vs Joshua weights
Per boxing protocol, the weigh-in for Fury vs Joshua would take place the day before the fight.
Fury weighed in at 264lbs (18st 12lbs) for his last fight – that demolition of Whyte. That was almost a stone lighter than the 277 he weighed for the trilogy with Wilder.
Joshua meanwhile tipped the scales at 240lbs (17st 2lbs) for his loss to Usyk.
Fury vs Joshua purses
Fury and Joshua were due to take home the biggest purses of their careers so far from that planned August meeting in Saudi Arabia. Not so fast…
Their two-fight deal had allowed for a 50-50 revenue split for the first fight, with the winner taking a 60-40 upside for the rematch.
Now, if the fight ever happens, circumstances may be very different. We must wait and see.
Current world heavyweight champions
Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk hold all of the major world heavyweight titles right now.
- Fury is the World Boxing Council (WBC), Ring Magazine and lineal heavyweight champion.
- Usyk meanwhile is the International Boxing Federation (IBF), World Boxing Association (WBA) and World Boxing Organization (WBO) champion.
The last undisputed world heavyweight champion was back in November 1999. That was another Briton in Lennox Lewis. He defeated Evander Holyfield on points in Las Vegas.
Fury vs Joshua promoters
Even outside the ring there is an all-star cast for Fury vs Joshua.
Fury is co-promoted by two Hall of Famers. The Top Rank supremo Arum in the United States. And Queensberry Promotions head Warren in the UK.
Joshua meawhile is promoted by Matchroom Boxing and Hearn. Hearn is a bigger media star than most fighters in the UK, in particular via his social media feeds. The parody ‘No Context Hearn’ Twitter account, which clips some of his best one-liners as short videos, has more than 350,000 followers. Like Hearn himself, it has become a cult thing.
Tyson Fury record and profile
Tyson Luke Fury, now 33 years old. was born in Wythenshawe in Manchester on August 12, 1988. Then a premature baby and weighing just one pound at birth, he is now a huge physical specimen. He is 6ft 9ins tall with a reach of 85ins. He lives in the seaside town of Morecambe in Lancashire.
Fury has a record of 32-0-1 with 23 wins inside distance. His only draw was that first meeting with Wilder in Los Angeles in December 2018.
Tyson (named after Mike Tyson) had his pro debut in December 2008. He disposed of Bela Gyongyosi with ease, and the rest is history.
There are two distinct chapters to Fury’s glittering career. The first from debut to November 2015, when he shocked Wladimir Klitschko to become world heavyweight champion.
Then came that three-year hiatus when Fury’s mental health issues threatened not only his boxing career, but his life. He also ballooned in weight to 400lbs.
Part two – the comeback – began in the summer of 2018 when the new Fury easily beat Sefer Seferi in Manchester. Just six months later he was back at world-title level.
Fury boxed brilliantly against Deontay Wilder in Los Angeles in 2018. Despite being knocked down twice, many experts felt he deserved the decision. Instead it was a controversial draw.
After wins over Otto Wallin and Tom Schwarz in 2019, Fury would rematch Wilder in Las Vegas in February 2020. This time he would leave nothing to chance.
Trained by Javan ‘SugarHill’ Steward and Andy Lee for the first time, he dominated from the first bell. The result was a one-sided beatdown which ended in Round 7 when Wilder’s towel came in.
Fury vs Wilder 3 was another stellar showing from ‘The Gypsy King’, who recovered from two fourth-round knockdowns to roar back and dominate. He would eventually knock out Deontay in Round 11 of a thrilling bout.
Next up was the domestic engagement with Whyte, and it was a triumphant homecoming for Fury in front of a baying crowd of 94.000 at Wembley Stadium. He dominated from the first bell and closed the show late in Round 6 with a perfect uppercut which landed Whyte on his back.
Anthony Joshua record and profile
Anthony Oluwafemi Olaseni Joshua was born in Watford on October 15, 1989. He is now 32 years old. Joshua stands 6ft 6ins tall with a reach of 82ins. He has a professional record of 24-2 with 21 wins inside distance.
Joshua was destined for professional stardom right from the start, having won Olympic gold in the amateurs at the London Olympics of 2012.
He was utterly dominant in his entry into the paid ranks, demolishing all-comers (including big domestic rival Dillian Whyte) en route to a 15-0 start and his first shot at a world title.
That came against American Charles Martin in April 2016, and AJ made the most of the opportunity. He blasted out Martin inside two rounds to become IBF world heavyweight champion.
Six more victories followed as AJ added the WBA and WBO belts to his collection. His victims included the likes of Joseph Parker, Alexander Povetkin and Carlos Takam.
The signature success though came against Wladimir Klitschko in front of 90,000 at Wembley Stadium in April 2017. After appearing on the brink of defeat, AJ recovered to win a classic via an 11th-round stoppage.
Joshua’s career suffered its first major blip in June 2019, on his American debut at Madison Square Garden. He was beaten inside seven rounds by late stand-in Andy Ruiz Jr.
AJ though took his defeat graciously and immediately exercised the rematch clause. Six months later, lighter and faster, he adapted his gameplan to box beautifully en route to a points victory in the Saudi Arabia rematch.
After a year-long hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Joshua finally returned to the ring against Kubrat Pulev on Saturday December 12, 2020.
And the Watford man produced an impressive display to knock out the durable Bulgarian in nine rounds. Pulev took a standing count and was down in the third and then twice in the ninth. The final exclamation point came via a beautiful Joshua right hand which closed the show in some style.
Joshua lost his belts for a second time when he was outpointed by the brilliant Ukrainian Usyk in a fascinating tactical battle at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on September 25, 2021.
Now – once again – he is on the outside looking in when it comes to the title picture. Right now a meeting with Fury is severely tarnished and worth less financially. He must rematch Usyk, regain his belts and then again sit down to talk turkey with ‘The Gypsy King’. It could be a long wait.