Deontay Wilder and his camp have thrown scorn on the elephant in the room at the Staples Centre this evening after his drawn contest with Tyson Fury in defence of his WBC Heavyweight title.
Anthony Joshua and his promoter Eddie Hearn held lengthy contract negotiations with the Englishman over a money-spinning unification fight earlier this year, but those talks hit trouble, something the ‘Bronze Bomber’’s trainer Jay Deas puts down to Joshua running scared of his fighter.
That left Tyson Fury as the hottest ticket in town for Wilder, and the two camps thrashed out a deal quick-fast, by all accounts.
Interviewed after the fight, Deas said of the AJ debacle:
“It was one of those things where Joshua said he wanted $50m to fight, so then we produced the $50m and everybody agreed to produce it and then he didn’t want to fight.”
“To me it’s simple...
“Did you or not say you wanted it? Yes you did, it’s on video.
“Did we produce it? Yes we did.
“Did you then fight? No.”
His fighter, resplendent in outfit he presumably picked with the eventuality of winning the bout in his mind.
“I don’t know, that’s up to him. We’ll see if they want to fight or not,” he said when asked what sort of message the fight will have sent to the other Englishman of heavyweight boxing’s upper tier.
He wasn’t buying, either, the idea that Joshua was asleep and wouldn’t be watching his rivals go to war.
“I heard he was going to be over here.”
Wilder's opponent on the night, Tyson Fury, was more forthright then both the men named above about his thoughts on Joshua.
"We're the two best heavyweights in the world," he shouted down a mic in the ring after the bout. "Joshua, where are you? Where are you? Chicken!"