The Alabamaheavyweight claims Hearn, the head of Matchroom Boxing, reached out to his team as a contingency plan ahead of Saturday’s fight in Saudi Arabia, which Usyk won with a split decision. Wilder has now gone on record to say that he wants more money in the purse after the Brit’s defeat last month.
In the build-up to the Jeddah fight, Hearn confirmed he reached out to manager Shelly Finkel about a potential Wilder-Joshua match-up, half a decade after initial preliminary talks went nowhere, but got no response.
Shortly after Joshua’s loss, 36-year-old Wilder, also known as The Bronze Bomber, tweeted: ‘They tried to lock me in for insurance because they knew he wasn’t going to Win. This is strictly a business. Not a sport there’s a different (sic).’
Wilder later told ESNews: ‘Eddie Hearn coming to us after everything is over with my fight and stuff like that, talking about offering a deal.’And my thing was, we’re busy. For me, it was easy to see what was going on. Boxing is solely a business, not a sport… It’s strictly a business. Do you understand what I’m saying? It’s strictly business. I have a lot of stories. With briefcases being thrown.
‘He was trying to contact us for reassurance. All of a sudden you wanted to make a fight because even you don’t have confidence in your own fighter that he was going to win.
‘For me, he was just trying to make a deal to ensure that he can lock something in. But the thing about it, when you lose, that price goes up. Do you know what I mean? You ain’t gonna get a solid deal, locked in.’
Hearn himself admitted he had reached out to Wilder’s team before the Usyk fight, saying he had offered ‘so much money but had not heard back – adding that ‘the fight was there for AJ if he lost.
‘I have got so much money for Wilder in an offer, but they never come back to me,’ Hearn told Seconds Out. ‘I don’t know whether Deontay Wilder doesn’t want to hear about that offer but whatever.
‘Right now honestly I am not thinking about any fight for AJ except Saturday night. If he loses the Wilder fight is there, but if he wins I think all he is thinking about his final fight with Fury. The Dillian Whyte fight will also be likely out there for AJ win or lose.’
Wilder is set for his first fight in over a year when he faces Robert Helenius in New York on October 15. It will be his first return since he was knocked out by Tyson Fury in their WBC title bout in Nevada last October.
Author: Linda .R. Jones