Make way for Wilder vs Whyte next? Why promoter Hearn wants itWritten by Lee Cleveland
Heavyweight contender Dillian Whyte (22-1, 16 KOs) is now the No. 1 ranked WBC heavyweight contender. Whyte, of course, defeated former top 5 heavyweight Robert Helenius last month.
Is it just a coincidence Whyte has moved to the top position just as promoter Eddie Hearn, for the last two weeks, has been strongly suggesting Whyte should face Deontay Wilder, the organization's champion?
Why Wilder vs Whyte?
The heavyweight fight everyone wants to see is Joshua vs Wilder but that showdown hasn't matured yet. Hence, there's not enough mainstream demand to compensate the fighters appropriately. As a result, Eddie Hearn wants to showcase Deontay in the UK by pairing him with Whyte, another fighter Hearn promotes.
Should Wilder fight in England before facing Joshua, Deontay's stock is likely to rise in Europe and the demand for Joshua vs Wilder would subsequently increase.
And should Whyte upset Wilder, Hearn would also win because he'd be able to solely promote Joshua vs Whyte 2 and not have to share revenue with another promotional outfit. Eddie Hearn wants Wilder vs Whyte because it's a win-win situation for him... But it also makes the most sense.
(Joshua vs Wilder news)
Wilder isn't playing along, so far
Thus far, the WBC champ seems insulted by the prospect of Wilder vs Whyte. Moreover, it’s been reported Wilder doesn't like Hearn's offer for facing Whyte in the UK.
However, if Hearn ups the ante, it would behoove Wilder to face Whyte in England, especially given Deontay's charismatic persona. He's likely to get a lot of mainstream coverage and subsequently pique the interest of casual British fans.
When then-44 year old Shannon Briggs went to England a few years back, he became a rock star of sorts. Thus, it's no surprise there are rumors he'll face British star Tyson Fury in the UK next year.
Yes, Briggs is more popular in England than his native America.
If a past-his-prime contender can drum up interest in the UK, how would an outspoken, undefeated, dominant champion in his prime fair out there?