Not even the presence of a multi-title fight show could overcome the loss of its main event.

With the postponement of the Tyson Fury-Oleksandr Usyk undisputed heavyweight champion subsequently came confirmation that the entire February 17 ‘Ring of Fire’ event will no longer move forward. Turki Alalashikh, chairman of General Authority and Entertainment in Saudi Arabia announced the disappointing news Friday evening,  

“Riyadh Season announced today that the much-anticipated boxing match between WBC Heavyweight Champion Tyson Fury and unified Champion Oleksandr Usyk, named "Ring of Fire", has been postponed,” Alalshikh revealed in a press statement. “The decision comes after Fury suffered an unfortunate cut above his right eye during a training session in Riyadh.

“Originally scheduled for February 17 as part of Riyadh Season activities, the fight will be rescheduled at a later date and tickets will be refunded to the public.”

The show was due to take place at Kingdom Arena in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. Friday’s fallout also meant bitter news for the undercard fighters. Among the roster of bouts now stuck on hold are the Jai Opetaia-Mairis Briedis lineal cruiserweight championship rematch and the Joe Cordina-Anthony Cacace IBF junior lightweight title fight.

As Boxing Scene previously reported, England’s Fury (34-0-1, 24KOs) was forced out of the February 17 show after a cut suffered during a recent sparring session. It came barely two weeks ahead of what would have been the first undisputed heavyweight championship showdown of the 21st century.

Event handlers briefly explored the possibility of a replacement opponent for Ukraine’s Usyk (21-0, 14KOs), the two-division and current unified WBA., IBF and WBO heavyweight titlist. Among the candidates was unbeaten IBF mandatory challenger Filip Hrgovic, who was already due a shot at the Fury-Usyk winner.

The decision to cancel the show and push back the undisputed heavyweight championship could have a ripple effect, should Hrgovic and his team push to immediately enforce his overdue mandatory status.

It’s clear that the Saudi investors are only interested in one fight, given the decision to kill off the entire undercard.  

“Once the medical team has evaluated Fury's eye, a clearer understanding of the recovery timeframe will emerge,” noted Alalshikh. “At that point, all stakeholders, including Riyadh Season, will collaborate diligently to promptly reschedule the fight. Regular updates will be provided to keep everyone informed of the latest developments.

“A disheartened Fury shared his sentiments, expressing his devastation at the setback after months of dedicated preparation and peak physical condition. He extended his apologies to all individuals impacted by the postponement, including his own team, Team Usyk, the undercard fighters, partners, fans, and the gracious hosts in Riyadh Season. Fury remains committed to returning to the ring as soon as his eye has fully healed, eager to deliver an unforgettable spectacle for boxing enthusiasts worldwide.”

Jake Donovan is a senior writer for Twitter: @JakeNDaBox