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The highly-anticipated trilogy fight between Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder is happening, although likely a little later than expected.

However, if Tyson Fury’s promoter Frank Warren had his way, the fight wouldn’t be taking place at all. And he was ready to pay millions to avoid a third bout.

Tyson Fury pummeled Deontay Wilder in the second fight

After a split-decision draw in their first fight in December 2018, one of the best heavyweight fights in recent memory, Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder met in the rematch on February 22. Aptly billed as “Unfinished Business”, there was no doubt that time around on who the winner was as Fury pummeled Wilder, handing the “Bronze Bomber” his first professional defeat.

From the opening bell, it was clear that Wilder couldn’t match Fury’s intensity. While Wilder would later blame his 40-pound entrance costume for taking his legs, Fury was simply the better fighter that night. Fury floored Wilder for the first time in the third round with a vicious right hand and then again in the fifth with a devastating combination. When Wilder got in trouble again in the seventh, his corner threw in the towel and that was that.

Fury’s promoter wanted to pay Wilder to avoid a third fight

Following the loss, Deontay Wilder had 30 days to invoke a clause in the contract that allowed either fighter to call for another rematch in the event of a loss. To nobody’s surprise, Wilder did indeed invoke the rematch clause on February 29, setting up the trilogy fight for the summer.

However, Tyson Fury’s promoter, Hall of Famer Frank Warren, didn’t want a third fight to happen, instead wanting Fury to take on Anthony Joshua to unify the division. In an interview with BBC Radio 5, Warren said he was disappointed in the prospect of Fury vs. Wilder 3 and was ready to make Wilder a substantial offer to refuse another rematch.

“I prefer to go straight to Joshua, but that is the contract.

“It has to be honored unless we can reach some accommodation for him to step aside. We could pay him to step aside if he wants to do that, but that is his choice.

“If he insists on the fight, we’re locked into it.”

Frank Warren

While Warren obviously didn’t get his way, he still believes that the fight with Anthony Joshua will happen. In December 2019, Joshua avenged the only loss of his career, defeating Andy Ruiz Jr. to win the WBA, IBF, WBO, and IBO heavyweight titles. He’s next scheduled to face Kubrat Pelev on June 20 but that fight is likely to be postponed due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Fury vs. Wilder 3 is likely to take place in October

When Deontay Wilder invoked his rematch clause, the trilogy fight with Tyson Fury was reportedly set for July 18, once again in Las Vegas. However, The Athletic has reported that the fight will likely take place on October 3 and it apparently has nothing to do with the coronavirus outbreak. The organizers simply prefer the fall.