Lawrence Okolie isn’t really interested in holding a grudge against his longtime—and now apparently former—promoter Eddie Hearn.

The WBO cruiserweight titlist is set to make his debut with Boxxer on Sky Sports in a cruiserweight match against David Light on March 11 in London.

The announcement ostensibly signaled an end to Okolie's long-term relationship with Hearn, but it is understood that the fighter is still in a protracted legal battle with the influential promoter over the status of his contract; Okolie believes he has fulfilled all the requirements stipulated in their original agreement, while Hearn contends Okolie owes his company one more fight.

Admittedly, boxing is a sport given to bad blood and vendettas, but Okolie doesn’t see his falling out with Hearn that way.

“I realize it’s just business,” Okolie told “The long and short of it is, you look at a contract and it tells you exactly what you need to know. Men lie, women lie, numbers don’t. Contracts don’t. It was quite straightforward on our end. Obviously on their end (Matchroom) you know there were loopholes that they wanted to try and exploit, but I understand why they did it at the time.”

While Okolie insists he and Hearn were never close—the way, say, Hearn is with some of his other clients, such as drug-embattled Conor Benn and former heavyweight titlist Anthony Joshua—the Hackney native respected the work they did together. Moreover, Okolie says he is still a “fan” of Hearn, who maintains an outsize presence in the boxing media sphere.

“Honestly speaking, we weren’t, like, friends,” Okolie said of Hearn. “We had a good working relationship, so on fight week we would do what we do. I knew, obviously, he’s been there in every fight and he was obviously someone I didn’t speak to directly, it was more through 258 (Okolie’s then management company).

“But you know I’ve been a big fan of him and I still am. I watch his interviews. It’s like that. But it’s not like me and him ever went for dinner or he ever called me and that kind of stuff. But it was a cordial relationship. Even now we’ve spoken a few times amidst all of this stuff. Of course, there’s been frustration on my side.”

“I’m not into making mortal enemies or ‘F U’ for life,” Okolie added. “Or whatever else. It just is whatever is. I understand the decisions they made on their end and they understand the decisions I made on my end. When it’s all said and done … anyway, I’m happy, they’re happy, everybody’s good.”