DAZN’s North American CEO Joe Markowski said he is still confident that he can help get Ryan Garcia’s fight with Gervonta Davis over the line.
Garcia-‘Tank’ Davis is one of the most coveted contests in the sport and on a recent trip to the UK, Markowski remained hopeful that it will take place this year, despite speculation that issues surrounding the rematch clause might scupper it.
“What needs to happen is the contracts need to reflect the deal that was made in principle between the parties at the end of last year that led to a sort of soft announcement of that fight,” explained Markowski. “I’m confident it gets done. It makes sense for DAZN, it makes sense for the fighters.”
Markowski was due to head to Los Angeles to meet with Garcia and Ryan’s promoters, Golden Boy, this week to iron out details but the crux of any issue was who would own the rights to the rematch promotionally rather than who would broadcast it.
“I’m not blowing our own trumpet, but I don’t think that fight would be happening had DAZN not made a more proactive effort to go to the US promotional and broadcast community and say, ‘Can we get out of our own way please, guys. We need to stop locking ourselves away into exclusive little silos and only doing fights within our own rosters of fighters. We need to work across the aisle.’ I applaud Stephen Espinoza at Showtime for being open to that. We had a number of conversations that proceeded the making of that fight, so I hope that is a sign of things to come between different entities in boxing, be it broadcasters or promoters.”
DAZN will show Anthony Joshua’s return to the ring on April 1, when the former heavyweight champion meets contender Jermaine Franklin. It’s Joshua’s comeback from consecutive defeats to Oleksandr Usyk and while AJ’s already been linked with bouts against Dillian Whyte and Deontay Wilder, if Markowski could have any future fight for Joshua, it would be against Tyson Fury. No other bout comes close.
“AJ-Tyson Fury for the world heavyweight championship, clearly,” he said. “And we’ve come close a few times over the years of having AJ in undisputed world heavyweight title fights and I know the guys at Queensberry, if Tyson remains world heavyweight champion after his Usyk fight and AJ gets back into position, I think there’s a motivation on both sides [to make it]. We got very close in the summer, it didn’t quite happen, but that’s the dream fight, and clearly in the course of the next five years with AJ hopefully back to winning ways, and back fighting as we all know he can, we think that’s very feasible in the course of this partnership. That’s one of the reasons we did this deal [DAZN signed Joshua to an exclusive deal].”
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