Deontay Wilder responds to Anthony Joshua's offer

Anthony Joshua’s unification bout with Deontay Wilder lies in the hands of the money men after the American’s camp turned down an offer of a flat $12.5million, or £8.8million, for the fight.

A counter-offer from Team Wilder is expected in the next 48 hours.

Team Joshua’s opening offer is said to be five times the maximum purse Wilder has ever earnt, but given AJ’s last opponent Joshua Parker was expected to take £8million from their fight at Cardiff, it’s far from surprising the more prominent Wilder has knocked back just 10% more to put his WBC belt on the line.

Hyperbole often accompanies big fights and where Team Wilder may have to revise their thinking is billing it a $100million dollar fight, or a stratospheric £70m to us ordinary mortals in the UK.

Joshua’s fight with Wladimir Klitschko in front of 90,000 at Wembley last April was expected to make £50million.

Wilder could draw in more bucks from fans in the US, but £20million more?

Joshua has accused Wilder’s team of quadrupling the amount on the table, which he branded unrealistic.

Either way, Wilder’s co-manager Shelley Finkel has confirmed that in their counter offer, there will be a rematch clause, and hinted at a split of around 40 per cent to Wilder.

“It will either be today (Thursday) or at the latest tomorrow (Friday). If he wants the fight, it will happen,” said Finkel.

“I would offer him something that gives him both a guarantee and an upside. We are working on how to structure it.

“We believe it’s a minimum of 60 [per cent to Joshua], probably closer to a hundred, but who knows?

“Again, even at 60 [per cent], he offered 20 per cent flat [to Wilder], but he wants 50 per cent flat. Come on. If he wants the fight then either don’t underprice Deontay and don’t overprice yourself.”

He added: “What we’re going to offer, if he doesn’t take, I don’t know where you go. But it will be interesting.

“When a manager or a fighter, usually a manager – the fighter usually wants the fight and I want to believe Joshua wants the fight – if you don’t want a fight, you ask for so much that you don’t get it.

“And you still say ‘I would have fought him’. That’s one side, or if you don’t want the fight you offer the other side so little that they won’t take it.

“I think the world will look at the counter offer and say, ‘if he wants the fight, this should happen”

With both fighters said to be up for the fight, protracted negotiations may be in the offing as the money makers seek to maximise their charges’ worth.

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