Usyk-Fury? Every event has a price – Frank Smith


Frank Smith from Matchroom Boxing shared his vision of the problems regarding the organization of the fight for the title of absolute heavyweight champion between British Tyson Fury (33-0-1, 24 KOs) and Ukrainian Oleksandr Usyk (20-0, 13 KOs).

“Maybe I’m wrong…
began Smith. “Look, don’t get me wrong… It’s not that I allegedly don’t want this fight to take place. But I don’t see the greatness, I don’t see the scale that should be in such an event – a duel for the title of absolute heavyweight champion. Agree, such fights do not take place every day. And I don’t see how the situation can change over the next 10 weeks, that is, the time left before the fight.”

Smith doesn’t seem confident that this fight will take place: “I’m not saying it won’t happen. But I have my own thoughts on why they couldn’t agree on a fight in Saudi Arabia. But I admit that there really will be serious problems with the organization of this fight. Understand that time is running out. The deadline is this week. They cannot wait longer, because such an event needs proper promotion. Perhaps they have some tricks up their sleeves, and soon we will see them.

“I know that Usyk agreed to the conditions that he was offered for the fight in Saudi Arabia,” continues Smith. This was confirmed by (Fury’s co-promoter) Bob Arum. From this it turns out that it was not possible to agree with Fury. I think they asked for a sum of money that it made no commercial sense to pay. After all, every product has its own price. I know a lot of people will be pissed off by what I have to say. But the reality is that Anthony Joshua’s market value in this division is sky-high. Therefore, his fight with Deontay Wilder is commercially larger than Usyk vs Fury. Even now more.”

“Once again, this is important. I’m talking about commercial value. I’m not saying that the Joshua vs Wilder fight is bigger than Usyk vs Fury in terms of history or importance to boxing. After all, this is a business. And the names are decisive here. They are of paramount importance,” says Smith.

Leading British observers also spoke about this yesterday: did Saudi Arabia refuse the Usyk-Fury fight because of Joshua and why the Middle East will not accept this fight.