Matchroom Sport promoter Barry Hearn says British/Commonwealth heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua (15-0, 15 KOs) made 4 times the amount in his last fight against Dillian Whyte than WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder made in his last title defense against Johann Duhaupas last September.
Joshua-Whyte reportedly brought in over 400,000 pay-per-view buys on Sky Box Office for their December 12 fight at the O2 Arena in London, UK. Joshua, 26, won the fight by a 7th round knockout after Whyte suffered a shoulder injury earlier in the fight in the 2nd round.
Hearn didn’t say what Joshua’s purse was for the Whyte clash. We do know that Deontay received a purse of $1.4 million for the Duhaupas fight in September 2015. If what Hearn says is true about Joshua making x4 the amount that Deontay made for his fight, then Joshua’s purse was $5.6 million for the Whyte fight on PPV.
“The numbers he [Joshua] hit in a British heavyweight title fight earned him four times the amount of money that Deontay Wilder got for his last fight,” Hearn said to skysports.com. “My job is to make sure his life changed. That will be very easy with Joshua,” Hearn said.
With the kind of money that Joshua is making, it’s no wonder he’s in no hurry to fight for a world title. If Joshua can make over $5 million just fighting for the British heavyweight title, then he doesn’t really need to take any risky fights. He can fight guys like Whyte, Dereck Chisora and Robert Helenius and get rich off those fights.
The negative about Joshua already making huge money at this point in his career is that it could potentially strip him of his ambition. We’ve seen how many fighters that get a lot of money at once tend to become inactive or retire soon after. You also see fighters that make big money becoming selective about the fights they take and aversive to taking risks.
It stands to reason if you’re making the kind of money that Joshua is making fighting domestic level guys like Whyte, then it might keep him from wanting to face the dangerous heavyweights like Luis Ortiz, Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury. We’re already seeing Joshua targeting the IBF title that was recently stripped from Fury. To win the IBF belt, Joshua will only need to beat the winner of the January 16th fight between Charles Martin and Vyacheslav Glazkov. Those are two flawed heavyweights, and neither of them would likely present much of a risk to Joshua.