Fury signs mega fight deal with Top Rank and ESPN
Tyson Fury, the British heavyweight boxer, has signed a co-promotional deal with Top Rank, one of the world’s leading promoters, for his next five fights to be shown in USA on ESPN, the cable sports broadcaster.
The agreement between Fury and his UK promoter Frank Warren of Queensberry Promotions and Bob Arum's Top Rank is understood to be worth £80 million ($103.4 million).
Fury's fights will be broadcast on ESPN in USA, and remain on BT Sport in the UK, under the terms of Warren's deal with the pay-TV broadcaster.
Warren said: "By partnering up with ESPN and Top Rank in America, we’re giving Tyson the opportunity to perform on the biggest and most powerful platforms on both sides of the Atlantic and become a truly global star.”
US promoter Arum, who will now co-promote Fury with Warren, added: "Top Rank is very excited to enter into the promotional arrangement along with Queensberry Promotions for the lineal heavyweight champion, Tyson Fury.
"He is a generational heavyweight talent at the peak of his powers. We also look forward to our increasing relationship with MTK Global, which represents so many world-class fighters."
The agreement makes negotiations over a rematch with Deontay Wilder, who Fury drew with in a memorable fight in December, more complicated.
An 18 May bout in Las Vegas had been mooted, but Wilder is contracted to Showtime, which must now deal with ESPN for the rights in USA.
Last year, ESPN signed a seven-year deal with Top Rank to provide live coverage of 54 events per year, of which 18 are shown live on ESPN linear channels, 12 are exclusive prime-time events on ESPN+, the new over-the-top service, and 24 are premium international events on ESPN+.
The Fury-ESPN deal builds on September's licensing agreement between Warren and Arum, under which some fighters in the British promoter's stable have their bouts shown in USA and Canada by ESPN.