Eddie Hearn, promoter for IBF, WBO, IBO, WBA heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua, has floated a different path for Oleksandr Usyk to pursue.

Usyk, who currently hold the WBO's mandatory position, has yet to allow Joshua to move forward with a potential full division unification against WBC champion Tyson fury.

The handlers for Joshua and Fury are in serious discussions to finalize a two-fight series.

If a deal is finalized, the first contest would come down on a date in May or June.

Olympic silver medal winner Joe Joyce is the WBO's second highest ranked contender.

If Joshua vacates the WBO title, then the sanctioning body would order Usyk and Joyce to collide for the vacant belt.

Hearn believes there is a possibility that after Fury and Joshua collide for the first time, the belts could become fragmented with mandatories looming before a contracted rematch.

Having said that, if Usyk faces Joyce for the interim-title - the belt could potentially be upgraded to the full title.

"Once they’ve fought for the undisputed championship, after that if the belts get fragmented then so be it," Hearn told Sky Sports’ Toe2Toe podcast.

"I’d just love that moment to see AJ as undisputed champion. You can say to Usyk, 'set your fight with Joe Joyce maybe for the interim belt, or after that it becomes the full championship.' Usyk is a classy guy, he’s a boxing guy through-and-through, he will see that Fury vs AJ is so good for the sport of boxing.

"Does he want to stop the undisputed heavyweight world championship fight? The fans won’t like it if he does as well. But we can’t just disrespect him and say, 'sorry mate you have to wait.' The answer I see is for Usyk to fight Joe Joyce.

"Now is a pivotal time in terms of belts and politics. We can’t afford in boxing right now to be restricted by the rules and requirements of governing bodies. Yes AJ vs Usyk is a great fight and Fury vs [Deontay]Wilder III is a good fight, but let’s be honest, it will be a let down for everybody if we don’t see this fight next. Talks are progressing really well. I’m confident that late May, early June, we will see that fight."