Back in 2018, promoter Eddie Hearn of Matchroom was trying to secure two major opponents for the star fighter of his stable.
WBO, IBF, IBO, WBA heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua, who Hearn promotes, is very eager to get in the ring with WBC heavyweight champ Deontay Wilder or undefeated lineal champion Tyson Fury.
Wilder is scheduled to defend his title against Fury in a rematch, on February 22nd in Las Vegas.
Last year, Hearn offered 60-40 monetary splits to both Wilder and Fury - which both boxers rejected.
Both Wilder and Fury demanded 50-50 deals - which Hearn and Joshua rejected.
Since then, Hearn admits that 'a lot has changed" as both Wilder and Fury have considerably raised their profiles. Also a factor in the equation, was Joshua suffering a stoppage loss to Andy Ruiz in June. Joshua avenged that defeat on December 7th in Saudi Arabia.
Based on the series of events in the last twelve months, Hearn is no longer ruling out the possibility of a 50-50 deal being placed on the table - to finalize a fight between Joshua and the winner of Wilder-Fury 2.
"A lot has changed. Let's be honest, a year ago Fury and Wilder were making a tenth or a fifteenth of what Joshua was making. And Joshua was undefeated, he held four belts, he was the clear king of the division. And both of these guys were offered 60-40, which I thought was the most generous deal that I thought that could be offered. And they both wanted 50-50 and I said 'sorry, no,'" Hearn explained to BoxingScene.com.
"Fast forward twelve months, and you've got Joshua losing - but Joshua recaptured the belts and I think that took him to a new level. But Fury and Wilder have fought each other, their profiles have both considerably raised in the U.S. I can badmouth people, but it comes with facts. So when things have changed, I'm big enough to say things have changed - and things have changed. You have Fury doing WWE, you have Fury beating Wilder the first time out. You have Wilder knocking out Ortiz and Breazeale and looking sensational.
"In my opinion, I still don't necessarily think they are worth 50-50 - but now I can see the argument. And it's going to get to a stage where they will only take the fight if it's 50-50. And that's an AJ decision, that's not an Eddie Hearn decision. I don't go in there and say 'this is how it's going to be, it's 50-50 and it's done.' I'll tell AJ - 'this is the only way that you'll make this fight, is if you give them 50-50, what do you want to do?' And in my opinion, and I don't want to put words in his mouth because AJ is his own boss, but he wants those fights so badly - that [50-50] will probably be the deal.
"Especially the winner of that fight, Wilder-Fury, does deserve the 50-50. But they never did at the time [a year ago], it wasn't even close back then - but things change."