By Keith Idec
Even Deontay Wilder’s potential opponents have various attractive options.
Multiple sources have informed BoxingScene.com that undefeated Polish heavyweight contender Adam Kownacki is considering offers from Bob Arum, Al Haymon and Eddie Hearn to fight on the platforms with which those three power brokers have content agreements. Kownacki’s past two fights, victories over Charles Martin and Gerald Washington, were part of Haymon’s “Premier Boxing Champions” cards and broadcast by Showtime and FOX, respectively.
If Kownacki (19-0, 15 KOs) were to sign with Arum’s Top Rank Inc., his fights would be broadcast by ESPN or be streamed by ESPN+, the platform ESPN executive want to help build by streaming meaningful heavyweight fights through it. If Kownacki picks Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing USA, DAZN would stream his fights.
Keith Connolly, Kownacki’s manager, declined to discuss specifics of the offers he has fielded regarding Kownacki.
“Promoters have been reaching out about Adam,” Connolly told BoxingScene.com. “Al Haymon and I will be meeting this week to finalize his next date, which I expect to be in May or June. We will also discuss which channel or platform is the most lucrative for Adam going forward. It’s a great time to be a boxer. There has never been this much money and opportunity in the sport.
“Adam, in my opinion, is a top-five heavyweight. He is looking to advantage of that, and hopefully fight for a title in the next year or so.”
The 29-year-old Kownacki could fight Wilder later this year or at some point in 2020 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, Kownacki’s hometown. Kownacki has established himself as a ticket-seller at Barclays Center and has told BoxingScene.com he is confident the building would be sold out if he challenged Wilder (40-0-1, 39 KOs) there for the Alabama-based knockout artist’s WBC title.
Kownacki knocked out Washington (19-3-1, 12 KOs) in the second round January 26 at Barclays Center. Eight of Kownacki’s past 10 fights have taken place at Barlcays Center, home of the NBA’s Nets.
Wilder, meanwhile, is considering sizeable offers from DAZN and ESPN as well. DAZN reportedly is prepared to present Wilder this week with a two-fight contract that would be worth at least $50 million overall.
FOX and Showtime, either live on the network or on pay-per-view, have televised Wilder’s fights throughout his championship reign the past four years.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.