Deontay Wilder seems set to turn down the £8.8million offer to fight Anthony Joshua.
The WBC champion has received a fight contract from Matchroom boss Eddie Hearn, but it is believed it falls well short of Wilder’s expectations.
Hearn insisted if Wilder’s team was to reject the latest offer, then Joshua would move on to finalising a deal to face WBA mandatory challenger Alexander Povetkin.
Wilder’s team, which includes Shelly Finkel, have already said they will accept any contract that is ‘within reason’. They also said they are prepared to do whatever it takes to make the unification showdown with Joshua happen.
However, the response from Finkel suggests the Wilder team is not happy with the offer on the table. He said: ‘No comment at all. We’re preparing a response.’
Promoter Lou DiBella, another member of Wilder’s team, was far less shy in his response to Joshua. He insisted the deal proved the Brit doesn’t want the fight.
‘If you’re going to make an offer that insults Deontay Wilder, it’s obvious Eddie doesn’t want the fight right now,’ he said.
Hearn has already insisted the AJ team will not be returning with an improved offer.
We are the A-side of this matchup
‘We’re the A-side of this matchup,’ Hearn told the Ring Magazine. ‘A 60-40 split is so disproportionate in terms of the relative values of both fighters.
‘Our offer is five times what Deontay Wilder has made for any fight. Everything he gets in this fight is because of Anthony. If they don’t want it, we’ll fight our mandatory.
‘If they don’t accept it, the fight’s not dead. It just means we’re going to fight Alexander Povetkin next, and we’ll talk again in December, or February or March of next year.’
Joshua became the WBO, WBA (Super) and IBF world champion when he stripped Joseph Parker of his strap in March.
The 29-year-old is aiming to become the heavyweight division’s first four-belt champion. However, he needs to fight and beat Wilder to achieve that goal.
On the same night Joshua defeated Parker on points, Povetkin scored a chilling knockout of David Price to secure his No.1 WBA contender spot.
The WBA has ordered Joshua to come to terms with Povetkin and will only put that fight on hold for a unification showdown with Wilder.
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