American heavyweight knockout machine Deontay Wilder “formally notified” Tyson Fury’s promoter Bob Arum that the American is enacting his rematch clause to force a third fight. Fury’s promoter, Arum, informed Ringside Reporter that Fury vs. Wilder 3 will happen this summer, likely in July.
ESPN’s Dan Rafael later confirmed the initial report Sunday. Per Rafael, Arum revealed, “the plan was for the fight to take place July 18 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, the same location that hosted the rematch on Feb. 22.”
Additionally, it would appear that many of the terms of the proposed rematch were already negotiated as part of getting the two fighters into the ring for the second fight. Per The Athletic’s Lance Pugmire, for instance, the location for Fury vs. Wilder 3 was always going to be somewhere in the U.S.
It was no secret that Wilder and Fury were probably headed to a third fight. But with Arum saying Wilder had “formally notified” the promoter of his intentions per the original report, it meant another massive heavyweight championship clash between the two boxers was almost assuredly happening later this summer.
Now that ESPN has reported the same story with the date and location added, it seems almost certain Fury vs. Wilder 3 is a done deal, pending an official announcement from the promoters and television networks, which will likely come at a later date.
Fury stopped Wilder in the seventh round last weekend. The two fought to a hotly contested draw in December 2018. Now it seems Fury and Wilder will meet for a third time this summer for Fury’s lineal, WBC, The Ring and TBRB heavyweight titles.
Wilder Remains Massively Dangerous Opponent
The upcoming third bout between Fury and Wilder adds intrigue to an incredibly compelling divisional landscape. While Fury arguably defeated Wilder both times and absolutely did in everyone’s eyes in the second fight, Wilder, 34, from Tuscaloosa, Ala., is such an incredibly hard puncher that any fight he’s in is noteworthy.
Wilder suffered his first loss to Fury last weekend in Las Vegas. But Wilder remains one of the most dangerous heavyweights in the sport. He’s also arguably the hardest-hitting fighter in boxing and one of the most powerful punchers in heavyweight history.
While most fans and media have dismissed the wild excuse about his ring walk outfit being to blame for his loss to Fury last weekend, the American held the WBC title for half a decade and deserves the immediate chance to recapture his title.
Anthony Joshua’s Summer Plans Don’t Include Waiting Around
Meanwhile, unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua isn’t going to simply wait around for the winner of Fury vs. Wilder 3 to emerge. Instead, promoter Eddie Hearn announced earlier this week that Joshua would defend his IBF, WBA and WBO heavyweight titles against Kubrat Pulev on June 20 in London.
Pulev’s lone loss came to Wladimir Klitschko in 2014. Since that fifth-round stoppage to the champ, Pulev has won eight straight fights to put himself in position for another world title opportunity.
Undisputed Heavyweight Champion Could Emerge in 2020
Additionally, it’s likely that the winners of Fury-Wilder 3 and Joshua-Pulev would be set to compete for all the title belts in boxing’s glamour division by the end of the year. That would crown the first undisputed heavyweight champion in boxing since Lennox Lewis defeated Evander Holyfield in 1999.
Both Fury and Pulev are promoted by Arum. Joshua is promoted by Hearn, and the two promoters have each been moving their heavyweight champs, Fury and Joshua, toward a massive 2020 showdown later this year.
Meanwhile, Wilder and Pulev could play the spoilers. While neither will be favored in their upcoming battles, the two fighters are notable contenders that simply cannot be overlooked.