WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury will have a purse split of 80/20 for his fight against mandatory Dillian Whyte. According to the Daily Sport, the World Boxing Council set the split on Thursday. A purse bid is scheduled for January 11th if the two fighters fail to negotiate a deal for the match.
Whyte, 34, wanted 45% for the fight, and that number was based on the maximum number allowed for an interim champion with the WBC facing the champion.
However, the WBC ultimately agreed to the 80/20 split that Team Fury had requested based on his bigger purses in his last three fights.
Not surprisingly, Fury’s purses for his last three fights against Deontay Wilder [x 2] and Otto Wallin were considerably larger than Whyte’s previous three fights against Alexander Povetkin [x 2] and Mariusz Wach.
Earlier this week, Fury’s promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank revealed that he’d offered Whyte a $5.5 million purse for the fight, which his team rejected. Arum was offering Whyte a 75/25 split, but he failed to take it. Now, Whyte is stuck with an 80/20 split.
They wanted $10 million, Arum says. In hindsight, Whyte should have agreed to the $5.5 million for the fight instead of rejecting it, hoping the WBC would push the split near the 55/45 number that they wanted.
Arum hasn’t made a statement on the WBC’s 80/20 split ruling. He obviously will need to discuss this news with Fury and Frank Warren to decide whether they wish to proceed with negotiations with Whyte’s management or vacate the WBC title.
If Fury vacates his WBC belt, he’ll defend his Ring Magazine heavyweight title against Andy Ruiz Jr. or Robert Helenius next March in the UK or U.S.
It’s reported that negotiations have already begun between Fury’s promoters and Ruiz’s management. A fight between them would be PPV-worthy in the United States, whereas a Fury vs. Whyte wouldn’t be viewed as one that would sell to the American fans.
Whyte isn’t a household name in the States, and the fans that do know of him remember him for his knockout loss to 41-year-old Alexander Povetkin in 2020.
Whyte will still make a lot of money with the 80/20 split. It’s likely to go to a purse bid, and it’s possible his promoters at Matchroom Boxing could come up with the winning bid.
If Whyte beats Fury, he can potentially face the winner of the Oleksandr Usyk vs. Anthony Joshua 2 rematch.
Both of those fighters have the goal of becoming undisputed, so they’ll likely be interested in fighting Whyte if he defeats Fury, even though the money won’t be nearly as good as it would if ‘The Gypsy King’ were their opponent.