Tyson Fury could still fight Oleksandr Usyk next, says Bob Arum, the influential head of Top Rank which co-promotes the WBC heavyweight champion.
Fury is next boxing in a non-title bout against Francis Ngannou, the mixed martial artist and former UFC titlist, and has himself suggested he will continue to fight other names from the world of MMA, like Jon Jones.
But Arum believes that Fury’s next contest will in fact be the undisputed championship clash with Ukraine’s Usyk, who holds the WBO, WBA and IBF heavyweight belts.
“It won’t be hard to make,” Arum told Sky Sports. “I know the Usyk people, they’re nice people. His manager, his promoter, they’re terrific people.
“Usyk himself is a terrific guy. I think he wants that fight. I think that fight’s going to happen and hopefully it will happen sooner rather than later.”
Even though previous negotiations to make Fury vs Usyk have failed, Arum maintains that not only will it be next but it could only be a matter of months away. “Probably early next year but it could happen as early as December,” he said.
He doesn’t however anticipate Fury having too many more bouts.
“I would like to see him fight Usyk. I think once he fights Usyk and assuming he beats Usyk then I think he’ll do a victory lap, maybe two more fights and let the younger guys take over,” Arum said.
Heir to the throne?
One of the “younger guys” coming up is excellent American heavyweight Jared Anderson.
Arum would like to see him box a Briton, recent title challenger Daniel Dubois.
“Perfect,” he said. “If Frank [Warren, Dubois’ promoter] will serve him up to me, we’ll take him.”
Anderson will be back in action soon.
“He’s fighting again November I think it’s a Thursday, the 16th in Vegas on a big card with Shakur Stevenson,” Arum explained. “The week of the Formula One race in Las Vegas.
“Then he will have fought four times this year, and we hope to have him in the ring four more times next year, and then we’re going to go for a world title.”