It’s the biggest rematch the heavyweight division has to offer, bigger (in the opinion of some, this writer included) than the Andy Ruiz-Anthony Joshua return. It’s Deontay Wilder-Tyson Fury II and it’s done for February 22. This is according to both Bob Arum and Shelly Finkel, who spoke with ESPN.com. The only thing that remains to be sorted out is the venue for the fight.
The rematch of the thrilling and quite unforgettable draw the two rival heavyweight champions (Wilder the WBC ruler, Fury the proud claimant of the lineal crown) had almost a year ago, was signed some weeks back, but the sequel taking place was reliant on Fury coming through okay against Otto Wallin (which he did, just about, despite suffering a terrible cut to his eye) and Wilder getting past Luis Ortiz in their rematch.
Now both men are set to rumble again in less than three months; a very quick turnaround for Wilder.
“We’re going to have an announcement before Christmas, but the fight is happening February 22, you can sleep on that,” Arum said.
While Finkel said he is not at all concerned about finalizing the site of the fight:
“It will all get worked out in December as far as the site, but the 22nd is the date,” Finkel told ESPN.com. “The site is not 100 percent yet but I’m not concerned about getting the site done.”
So where will the fight be held? Where should Fury-Wilder II be staged? Arum said that in his opinion The MGM Grand in Las Vegas will host the fight, although he stated that “nothing is set in stone.” There are of course other big-money players out there when it comes to hosting a big, big fight. The first fight between the boxer and the puncher took place in Los Angeles, so it is possible the return will wind up there. Or what about the U.K? Seeing how Fury went to the U.S for fight-one, might he call for the return to take place in his homeland (actually, maybe not, if we can believe Fury when he says he is “done” fighting in England, because “they didn’t treat me well”)?
Might the big money men over in Saudi Arabia make an attempt to grab this fight? Fury did engage in a WWE event in Saudi Arabia recently and he said he would love to return.
For me, and maybe for you, Wilder-Fury II is a Las Vegas fight, though. It’s been a long time, too long, since we had a truly magical heavyweight night in Vegas but maybe this fight, one that everyone wants to see, wil bring back memories of the glory days on The Strip, when giants like Tyson, Holyfield, Foreman, Lewis and Bowe enjoyed the attention of the entire sporting world.
Arum thinks The MGM in Vegas will bag the fight. I for one hope he’s right.