EDDIE HEARN says it's 'virtually impossible' for Anthony Joshua to step aside and allow Tyson Fury to face Oleksandr Usyk.
Team Usyk reached out to Joshua's camp earlier this month to see if he'd be willing to forgo his rematch with the newly-crowned unified heavyweight champ.
But the WBC's ordering of a Battle of Britain between title-holder Fury and Dillian Whyte has all but paved the way for AJ to rematch his conqueror early next year.
Matchroom Boxing chief Hearn wrote in his BBC column: “There’s been lots of talk about Anthony Joshua, Oleksandr Usyk, Tyson Fury and Dillian Whyte.
"Rumours of a step aside offer for Joshua are exaggerated. His focus has always been on rematching Usyk.
"If there was a conversation to be had we’d have it, but the announcement from the WBC makes that virtually impossible.
"Dillian is now Fury’s mandatory, it’s been a long time coming."
Negotiations over the long-awaited showdown of former sparring partners Fury and Whyte – which was mandated earlier this month – are currently ongoing.
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But both parties are going back and forth over the pair's respective splits of the lucrative purse.
Hearn said: “We await official confirmation of the split for that fight, but it’s almost nailed on we will see Fury v Whyte in the spring of 2022.”
AJ suffered a lopsided points defeat to Usyk in their September showdown at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and is hellbent on exacting revenge on the slick southpaw.
He told iFL TV: "I have one thing in my mind, that’s war, that’s murder, that’s war, let’s go out there and hurt the guy.
"Take his soul to the point where he wants to give up. That’s what boxing’s about, I’ve learned that.
"You hit people constantly, keep on applying a certain amount of pressure, before they know it they’ll realise you aren’t going anywhere, you’re here to stay.
“With the game plan, that’s all I have in my mind at the minute, that one track, stay on course, take this guy to places he doesn’t want to go.”
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