‘If Fury doesn’t respect Whyte, he’s in trouble!’

Tyson Fury knows “you don’t take a guy like Dillian Whyte lightly”, says his promoter Bob Arum, who has revealed that talks have now begun for a fight in early-2022.

WBC heavyweight champion Fury was ordered by the governing body this week to open negotiations to defend his title against Whyte, who has been officially named as his mandatory challenger.

Anthony Joshua is therefore expected to go through with the second fight which he triggered against new IBF, WBA and WBO champion Oleksandr Usyk, whose promoter Alexander Krassyuk told Sky Sports: “Talks occurred and they are in progress. The basic platform is the rematch.”

Dillian Whyte will finally receive a world title shot

Top Rank’s Arum, who promotes Fury in the US, told Sky Sports: “Why wouldn’t Fury respect Whyte?

“Heavyweights throw bombs. If he doesn’t respect him, he’ll be in a lot of trouble.

“Fury is enough of a professional, and a great fighter, and he knows that you don’t take a guy like Whyte lightly.”

Fury twice stopped Wilder

Whyte was first at the pinnacle of the WBC rankings in 2017, and regained his status as interim champion by winning a rematch with Alexander Povetkin.

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He is finally set to receive his first-ever world title shot.

“[Fury’s UK-based promoter] Frank Warren talked [on Wednesday] to Tyson who wants to get in the ring in February or March,” revealed Arum.

“We are talking to Whyte now to come to an arrangement to put the fight on in the UK.

“It will be a splendid fight and we are working hard to put it together.”

Whyte dismantled Povetkin in their rematch

Undefeated Fury told Sky Sports last month about his next opponent after back-to-back wins over Deontay Wilder: “Whoever is available, whatever makes sense.”

The undisputed heavyweight championship fight could be staged in late-2022, Arum believes.

“Usyk will probably now fight Joshua which he is obligated to do,” he said.

“If Usyk is successful against Joshua, there will be a massive fight – Usyk vs Fury.”

Tyson Fury’s last five fights have been in the US

Fury’s previous five fights have been in the US – the trilogy with Wilder plus wins over Tom Schwarz and Otto Wallin.

Arum said about Fury’s UK homecoming to fight Whyte: “It will be wonderful.

“He has made such a name for himself in the United States that people mistake him for being an American!

“He is Americanised. He has a home in Las Vegas. He is an open personality. People are attracted towards him, they love him.

“He has done a great job of capturing the American market.”

Bob Arum on his 90th birthday

Veteran promoter Arum spoke to Sky Sports on his 90th birthday, a reminder of the legendary career he has built in boxing.

Arum promoted 27 of Muhammad Ali’s fights, including ‘The Rumble in the Jungle’ against George Foreman, and now promotes the iconic heavyweight’s grandson Nico Ali Walsh, who fights live on Sky Sports in the early hours of Sunday morning.

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Josh Taylor and Jack Catterall traded verbals ahead of their all-British battle for undisputed supremacy

Arum has worked with Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao, Oscar De La Hoya, Mike Tyson and many other legends.

His Top Rank stable today includes undisputed super-lightweight champion Josh Taylor, whose defence against Jack Catterall is live on Sky Sports on February 26.

Vasiliy Lomachenko’s return against Richard Commey in the early hours of Sunday morning, live on Sky Sports, is Arum’s 2,119th boxing event.

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Vasiliy Lomachenko dismantled Masayoshi Nakatani

His ambition for next year: “I would love to promote an undisputed heavyweight championship fight.

“It would take me back to the days of Ali when the title was unified.

“The heavyweight division is the premium division.

“If there is one guy as the champion, rather than a group or two guys, it is good for boxing.

“Whoever is left standing.

“I hope that I can promote the fight where this happens.”

Sky Sports Boxing schedule

Sunday December 12 – Top Rank in New York
Vasiliy Lomachenko vs Richard Commey
Jared Anderson vs Oleksandr Teslenko
Nico Ali Walsh

Sunday December 18 – Top Rank in Montreal
Artur Beterbiev vs Marcus Browne – IBF and WBC light-heavyweight titles

Saturday January 29 – BOXXER in Cardiff
Chris Eubank Jr vs Liam Williams
Claressa Shields vs Ema Kozin – IBF, WBA and WBC middleweight titles

Saturday February 19 – BOXXER in Manchester – Sky Sports Box Office
Amir Khan vs Kell Brook

Saturday February 26 – Top Rank in Glasgow
Josh Taylor vs Jack Catterall – undisputed super-lightweight titles

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