After months of talk and delays, a third bout between Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder appears to have fallen apart. In fact, WBC heavyweight champion Fury said he has officially "moved on" from the fight, and will look to get back in the ring before the end of 2020.
After a controversial December 2018 split draw, Fury and Wilder rematched in February. The undefeated Fury handed Wilder the first loss of his professional career with a seventh-round TKO in a one-sided bout. The loser of the bout had a contractual guarantee that they could initiate a rematch taking the short side of a 60-40 purse split. Wilder immediately invoked the clause, but as the bout continued to get pushed to later in the year, and eventually to 2021, Fury said he has had enough.
The originally targeted date for the trilogy fight was July 18, but a Wilder injury -- as well as the pandemic -- bumped the bout to October.
"Then they asked me if I would agree to push it to December. I agreed to Dec. 19," Fury told The Athletic. "Then they tried to change the date again into next year. I've been training. I'm ready. When they tried moving off Dec. 19 and pushing to next year, enough was enough. I've moved on."
Fury's words back up those of his co-promoter, Frank Warren, who recently told ESPN, "Promoters on both sides, we have worked very hard to make it happen, but it's looking like it will not happen. There's talk about it happening next year. Tyson has been training like a lot of guys solidly since February, and he wants to fight this year."
Warren said that Fury would "maybe revisit the fight another time" as the champion works toward his goal of a unification showdown with Anthony Joshua, the man who holds the three other recognized heavyweight world championships.
"I am the best fighter in the world," Fury told The Athletic. "The lineal heavyweight champion. The two-time Ring magazine heavyweight champion. The WBC heavyweight champion. And before the end of 2021, I will be the only man on this earth with a heavyweight championship belt."
For their part, the Wilder camp has denied that the timer has run out on their contracted rematch, with Wilder's manager Shelly Finkel stating, "They are wrong, we will fight in December."