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Fury-Wilder III to end trilogy at Allegiant Stadium

Updated July 1, 2020 - 6:36 pm

The most captivating trilogy in boxing may have found a home.

In Las Vegas.

At Allegiant Stadium on Dec. 19.

The Raiders’ new $2 billion palace has been reserved that night for the third fight between heavyweight juggernauts Tyson Fury (30-0-1, 21 knockouts) and Deontay Wilder (42-1-1, 41 KOs), according to Top Rank chairman Bob Arum, Fury’s co-promoter.

Arum also said he hopes a crowd of 20,000 or so can attend the fight, provided the right precautionary and social distancing measures are in place amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“That is the date that we all want,” Arum said. “That’s the date that both sides are happy with. Whether we’ll be able to do it in the stadium with limited seating, that’s in the hands of the gods.”

The fight would likely be the first at the stadium and would take place two days after the Raiders’ Thursday night game against the Los Angeles Chargers. Arum said his promotional firm has been “very friendly” with the Raiders since they arrived in Las Vegas, and that his staff has been in contact “for a while” with owner Mark Davis and president Marc Badain about contesting a fight at the stadium.

“Whenever they fight, I think it’s going to be a huge type of attraction, and to do it as the first fight at Allegiant Stadium would be something really special,” Arum said.

Fury and Wilder first fought to a controversial draw in December of 2018 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, sparking one of boxing’s fiercest rivalries in its most traditionally popular division.

They both fought tuneup fights in Las Vegas last fall and met again on Feb. 22 at MGM Grand Garden before a sellout crowd of 15,816 — grossing a heavyweight record live gate of $16.9 million.

Fury won via seventh-round technical knockout to capture Wilder’s WBC title.

Wilder promptly exercised a rematch clause built into the fight’s contract, and the trilogy was supposed to conclude in July before the virus forced an indefinite postponement. Top Rank since has constructed a bubble site inside MGM Grand’s Grand Ballroom, and has been holding biweekly fight cards the last three weeks.

Arum said last month Allegiant Stadium could potentially host a lightweight unification bout in September between world titlists Vasiliy Lomachenko and Teofimo Lopez. But he said Wednesday that holding a fight in the stadium that soon may be “too ambitious.”

“By Dec. 19, people will say, ‘Yeah, maybe by then, the worst is over and they can do it,’ ” Arum said. “If I start saying September, I open up can of worms. … If we have to do (Lomachenko and Lopez) in the bubble, then we’ll do it in the bubble. If we can get spectators, maybe at the MGM or at Allegaint or whatever, we’ll keep everybody in the bubble and get spectators.

“But I’m not asking for that now. And I don’t know if that’ll be possible.”

Contact reporter Sam Gordon at sgordon@reviewjournal.com. Follow @BySamGordon on Twitter.

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