The rival heavyweights fought to a thrilling and controversial draw when contesting Wilder’s WBC title in Los Angeles in December, and then surprised and disappointed when an immediate rematch was not announced.
Wilder instead on Saturday made his latest title defence by stopping Dominic Breazeale and Fury is preparing to next month fight the little-known Tom Schwarz in Las Vegas having recently signed a long-term deal with ESPN.
That Wilder will again soon need a challenger, and Anthony Joshua is next week fighting Andy Ruiz in New York, means that demand is again growing for them to fight for all four world titles, but as Press Association Sport previously reported, the rematch between Wilder and Fury is likely to take place first, and in 2020.
“Deontay Wilder cannot run from Tyson Fury forever,” the 30-year-old Fury told ESPN. “The fight has to happen.
“This rematch has got to happen, but it won’t be in May, June, July or August.
“This fight, I’m being told, is likely to happen in March or April next year.
“We were very close to a rematch. We had contracts, they had contracts, we were trying to agree terms.
“All of a sudden I had a massive deal from ESPN and they made me an offer I couldn’t refuse. That would’ve been in May I believe.
“Deontay Wilder apparently signed a three-fight deal (with Showtime) before I signed an ESPN deal.
“So this was all done even before I put pen to paper.”
That Fury is contracted to fight on ESPN and Wilder and Joshua are respectively committed to Showtime and DAZN further complicates the already-difficult political landscape that exists between the three rivals, but Fury said: “If the fighters are willing to fight then why should the networks get in the way?
“Fighters use that as an excuse. Anthony Joshua, he uses that a lot as an excuse.
“I believe if the fighters really want to fight each other they will.”
Boxers are never usually short on confidence and Keith Thurman declared he would retire Manny Pacquiao during their pre-fight press conference at Gotham Hall in New York on Tuesday.
Iconic Filipino fighter Pacquiao, nicknamed ‘Pacman’, and WBA super welterweight world champion Thurman, dubbed ‘One Time’ due to his ferocious punching power, meet on July 20 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
“I believe boxing has come to a new era. Floyd (Mayweather) is gone, (Manny) Pacquiao is here. Come July 20th he will disappear, ok he will disappear,” said Florida native Thurman, 30.
“I’m doing to Manny Pacquiao what he did to Oscar De La Hoya. You can google it if you want too. Oscar De La Hoya never fought again. Alright.”
Regular WBA world champ Pacquiao, on what else he has to prove at 40-years-old, responded: “To prove is, to prove that I can still fight at the age of forty.
“I’ve been in this sport for more then two decades and no one can intimidate me.”
Deontay Wilder dispatched Dominic Breazeale with a lightning-quick first round knockout to remain the WBC heavyweight champion.
With a steamroller right hand, the Bronze Bomber sent the title challenger crashing to the canvas at the Barclays Centre just two minutes and 17 seconds into the opener.
The devastating KO extended the 33-year-old’s unbeaten record to 41 wins and a draw from 42 bouts.
Wilder’s 20th first round knockout came after a rapid start to the bout in New York, the champion throwing an early right to set the tempo.
The energetic start exposed the Bomber to a shot by Breazeale as he came back off the ropes.
But the counterattack lasted seconds before Wilder, after a jab with the left, unleashed the decisive blow.
The right hand connected with Breazeale’s jaw and the challenger crumpled on the spot, lying spread eagle as Wilder danced around the ring.
Breazeale managed to get to his feet, but dizzily stumbled backwards into the ropes as the referee made it clear the fight was over.
Wilder’s last fight, a bout with Tyson Fury in December, ended in a controversial draw.
Many felt the American was fortunate to keep his unbeaten record intact following the fight.