Just twenty four hours after targetting Tyson Fury, Anthony Joshua has once again been gazumped by WBC champion Deontay Wilder.
In a series of updates, Wilder explained his next two fights were signed and sealed. Firstly, Luis Ortiz steps in before Fury in early 2020.
Both bouts are rematches of clashes Wilder staged in 2018.
Joshua had hoped to open negotiations with Wilder after his weekend battle with Andy Ruiz Jr.
Wilder took the power out of Joshua’s hands by confirming the Ortiz return during AJ’s fight week.
To add further to Joshua’s anguish, Wilder has now stated the ink is dry on a second installment with Fury.
“Well, As I always say I’m the realest Champion in the business. As I’ve mentioned before I must handle all my controversial fights ASAP!
“Luis Ortiz @kingkongboxing is first then Tyson Fury @Tyson_Fury is next,” pointed out Wilder.
Addressing his decision to agree two defenses back-to-back, the American added: By no means am I looking pass Ortiz. He’s a dangerous fighter but I am looking through him (Window Shopping).
“Shid, I’m the best. Ain’t No guess’N. What other champion gives you what your Miss’N?”
On facing Fury again, Wilder concluded: “One fell to his knee, the other on his back. If you got questions then ‘we run it back’.
“All Contracts have been signed already…it’s officially on!”
Fury believes he was on the wrong end of a controversial decision last December despite being dropped twice by Wilder in Los Angeles.
In the end, a stalemate was played out before the pair agreed to do it again on May 18. At the last minute, Fury pulled out to sign a lucrative deal with ESPN.
At the time, Wilder’s representative Shelly Finkel informed WBN he still expected the rematch to happen. It’s now set to go down in February or March of 2020.
Ahead of a fight with Tom Schwarz on his ESPN debut under Top Rank, Fury will play out a trio of contests this year to warm up for Wilder.
Schwarz steps up on June 15 in Las Vegas. Fury is then likely to face more also-ran foes around August and October.
This all means Joshua is out of the loop again and won’t be in the frame to trade blows with either, potentially until 2021.
Wilder v Fury are likely to have a third fight at the back end of 2020, whatever the result in the second encounter.
Adam Kownacki will be sandwiched between a Fury trilogy should Wilder come out on top next year.