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Eddie Hearn hopes December date for Anthony Joshua-Kubrat Pulev will allow for fans

Hearn says he would still love to stage the fight in London should the local government approve.

Andy Ruiz Jr v Anthony Joshua 2 - Clash on the Dunes, IBF, WBA, WBO & IBO World Heavyweight Title Fight Photo by Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn tells ESPN that since his unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua will only have one outing this year, he might as well push it all the way back to December where he can give himself the best opportunity to have a live gate amidst the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

“We know AJ’s only going to fight once this year, so we want to give ourselves the best opportunity to bring in a crowd, and that would obviously be the later the better,” Hearn told ESPN. “But it’s still not a gimme at all. There’s still a very strong chance that AJ will have to fight behind closed doors.”

Hearn is specifically targeting the first weekend in December and would love to stage the bout at London’s O2 Arena, should they manage to be able to host the fight in that location. Either way, Hearn says it’s his job to make sure Joshua gets back in action — with or without fans — so he’ll be looking at every angle possible to make the logistics work.

As for having the fight in London, well, that’s going to require some assistance from the local government, who would have to approve an event like this under their jurisdiction.