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Bob Arum says planned summer date for Fury-Joshua is “dead in the water”

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Fury has not fought in 14 months.

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COMBO-BOX-HEAVY-GBR-JOSHUA-FURY Photos by RINGO CHIU and FAYEZ NURELDINE / AFP

Eddie Hearn has repeatedly insisted that Tyson Fury vs. Anthony Joshua is all but signed, but Bob Arum isn’t convinced. He tells the Telegraph that the fight won’t land in the summer and may not even take place this year due to ongoing negotiations.

“It will take months for the Saudis to do their due diligence on such a huge deal. It is not just a site fee, there are ancillary demands from the Saudis stretching into the broadcast deals and other things, it could take months for it all to play out. It could even take until 2022 the way it looks right now. The fight in July or August is dead in the water as far as we are concerned. The two fighters need to go and have other fights this summer while the negotiations for that fight in the Middle East conclude.”

Frankly, Fury (30-0-1, 21 KO) and Joshua (24-1, 22 KO) should have already taken interim fights; Fury’s sitting on 14 months of inactivity and WBO mandatory challenger Oleksandr Usyk appears stuck in limbo while they figure out Joshua’s next move. We already saw Pacquiao-Crawford tank when the Middle Eastern money failed to materialize, and from where I’m sitting, Arum’s pessimism looks a lot more convincing than Hearn’s optimism.

If it’s this difficult to put such an obvious fight together under these circumstances, then don’t hold their careers hostage while you try to muddle through it all.