In this video interview with Eddie Hearn, the Matchroom promoter talks to FightHub about pitching Deontay Wilder a fight with Dillian Whyte, and why that negotiation didn't make much headway. Hearn still thinks that's a good fight to make, though, and explains why...
"Look, [Whyte's] No. 3 in the [WBC] rankings. No. 1 is Bermane Stiverne. Once he gets beat by Wilder, he's out. No. 2 is Luis Ortiz, who I suspect will be banned. Effectively Dillian Whyte's already No. 1...
"There's only so much I can do [to get Wilder to take the fight]. We've made them what we believe to be a huge offer. I think it's a great opportunity for Deontay Wilder. They seem to think it's disrespectful, that we're like saying 'oh you've got to earn shot at AJ, you've got to beat Whyte first.' Not at all. It's just a great fight for great money. It's gonna increase your value worldwide — especially in the AJ fight, which is inevitable if you beat Dillian Whyte. If you don't beat Dillian Whyte you can have a rematch clause, no problem."
Then Hearn is asked about how trying to negotiate with Wilder has created a bit dust up with Wilder's promoter Lou DiBella, which has its own story line.
For those unaware, the British promoter is taking his act Stateside after recently signing middleweight Daniel Jacobs, a Brooklyn native. Hearn will be promoting his first U.S. card in the New York area next month and that is said to have created some tension with Lou DiBella, who traditionally makes New York his stomping grounds. Neither promoter has shied away from taking shots at one another on social media.
"I don't know, I just seemed to have ruffled his feathers. All I said was that Lou's not his own boss in that respect, he doesn't make the decisions for Deontay Wilder. That's true. It's not being disrespectful but Lou started saying 'oh, he thinks he's gonna come to New York and run me out of town...' I don't know what he's talking about. I'm not trying to run anyone out of town. I'm coming to America, I'm gonna put on my own shows, I believe I'm gonna be very successful. Maybe I will be, maybe I won't be.
"But Lou's got a chip on his shoulder. He used to be the big head honcho at HBO, now he's not. He's out there crafting a living, like a lot of us are, but he's under pressure, from me coming in! But I'm not trying to take his fighters, I'm not trying to ruin his business. I want to work with him. I'm working with lots of promoters on the Nov. 11th card.
"But, you know, it's good. It's still good. People talk about it. People like it. 'Promoter Wars,' you know what I mean? I don't take it too seriously, I think it's great. It builds fights, it builds hype, it gets people talking."