UK boxing legends Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury signed contracts on Monday to compete for the undisputed heavyweight crown after months of reported negotiations, bringing the "biggest fight" in British boxing history closer to reality, ESPN reported on Monday.
Joshua's promoter, Eddie Hearn, reportedly said that all of the paperwork for two fights has been completed, exchanged, and signed, with the first expected to take place this summer.
"This is the biggest fight in boxing and one of the biggest sporting events in the world," he said. "It will be a major, major win for a country that wants to showcase itself."
He added that the sides would "like to get a site deal confirmed in the next month," with late June or early July being the most likely dates for the first bout.
"I know how hard we've worked these last couple of months and I just feel that this fight is so big it's not a difficult sell. We've already had approaches from eight or nine sites. The offers have come from multiple countries in the Middle East, from Asia, Eastern Europe and America," Hearn continued.
The most tempting offers are currently being made in the Middle East, with Saudi Arabia reportedly leading the charge.
Previously it was reported that the deal stipulates a 50-50 split in the first fight and a 60-40 split in the rematch, with the winner earning the greater share. The rematch is set to take place preferably in November or December.
However, the announcement of the deal comes only days after Fury, 32, expressed his dissatisfaction with the negotiations, reportedly saying that he had stopped training for the Joshua bout and was drinking "up to 12 pints a day." In addition, on his Twitter, Fury posted a selfie with an almost half-empty bottle of whiskey.
"You never really know with Tyson," Hearn commented on that news. "It could be mind games. He could be having a bad day. He could be a little pissed off. Or he could be having a joke."
The spectacular two-fight contract is expected to surpass Floyd Mayweather vs. Manny Pacquiao as the most lucrative match in boxing history, according to the report.
"One of the fascinations about this fight will be the buildup because they're two totally different characters, two totally different personalities. The mind games will be on another level for this fight. Tyson is very good at that. Anthony is excited by that. ... He's so pumped, so focused, he hasn't stopped training since the [Kubrat] Pulev fight [in December]. He's like a caged lion. The buildup is going to be epic."