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Eddie Hearn looks back on passing over potential Tyson Fury deal in 2017

The Matchroom promoter believes he could have signed Fury a few years ago, before his comeback began.

Carl Frampton v Scott Quigg - IBF & WBA Super-Bantamweight World Unification Title Fight Weigh-In Photo by Sportsfile/Corbis/Sportsfile via Getty Images

Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn has done a pretty damn good job acquiring talent and growing his stable from a UK-based outfit into one that has made a real dent in American boxing, too.

But he tells Sky’s “Doing the Rounds” show that he has at least one major regret, which is missing a chance he felt he had to sign Tyson Fury in 2017, when Fury was out of boxing and well out shape:

“I had a chance to sign him. I was in Monaco, I think I could have signed him. I didn’t want to give him the fights that he wanted to take at the time, because I thought it was just too much money and the fights weren’t good enough — and I probably should have done it, to be honest with you. I looked at him and I thought, ‘You ain’t ever going to come back anyway, look at the size of you,’ but he surprised everybody and how wrong I was.”

Hearn adds that if he could sign three fighters in the world right now that he doesn’t have already with Matchroom, they would be Fury, Ryan Garcia, and Gervonta Davis.

Fury would whip himself into better and better shape with trainer Ben Davison, and return to action in June 2018 with promoter Frank Warren and MTK Global. By the end of 2018, he was back near the top of the division for sure, fighting then-WBC titleholder Deontay Wilder to a controversial draw. In 2019, he signed a U.S. deal with Top Rank, won a couple more fights on ESPN platforms, and then beat Wilder convincingly for the WBC belt in February of this year.

But it’s hard to blame Hearn here, either — Fury in late 2017 hadn’t fought in two years, had all kinds of issues outside the ring, and had ballooned up in weight. Anyone taking a chance on Fury was kind of gambling. It’s definitely paid off for Warren, MTK, and Top Rank, as Tyson has done everything he said he’d do, and Hearn is now the one aggressively chasing the self-styled “Gypsy King” for a fight on behalf of Anthony Joshua.

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