Tyson Fury calls Deontay Wilder 'weak' as row erupts at press conference
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Bob Arum has exploded at British presenter Kate Abdo for calling on a face-off between Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder at last night’s final press conference. The Hall of Fame promoter and Top Rank chief, who represents Fury, was incensed when Abdo invited the two heavyweight titans to get closer following a heated war of words on stage, claiming it was already agreed the face-off would not be happening.
Promotional teams are now operating with extra caution after pound-for-pound great Canelo Alvarez traded blows with IBF super-middleweight champion Caleb Plant at their press conference last month.
There were already fears over the two heavyweight rivals coming face to face given their bad blood, which has intensified ever further this week after Wilder continued to stand by his claims that Fury cheated in their rematch last February.
Plans for Fury and Wilder to face off had to be hastily scrapped in the end on Wednesday night as things turned heated, with the Gypsy King later joking he “would have nutted” the American if it had gone ahead.
Speaking after the press conference during a media scrum, Arum was not prepared to bite his tongue as he called out Abdo for her actions, while also bizarrely accusing her of being biased towards the American fighter.
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“They bring this woman in from the UK and she’s slanting all the press conference to Wilder,” Arum was captured saying.
“I don’t give a damn but it’s obvious that’s what she was doing.
“She knew that the understanding was, no face-off.
“Tom Brown argued with FOX no face-off, we said no face-off and what does she say: ‘Now we’re going to do a face-off.’
“F*** her and f*** them, there was no face-off and we save the fight.”
Abdo has since responded with a statement on social media, explaining why she called on the face-off.
She wrote on Twitter: “With regards to the face-off – I was doing what we the broadcaster believed was agreed upon. But I think that’s kind of unimportant now.
“I have nothing but respect for Bob Arum and the empire he has created. I understand what he means to boxing and what this sport owes him.
“I think the language in this interview was entirely inappropriate. Of course it’s disappointing to be disrespected by someone I respect.
“But that’s life, not everyone will give you the courtesy you deserve.”
The foul-mouthed rant was not the only notable incident during the tense media scrum, as Arum also attacked ESPN journalist Mike Coppinger.
Coppinger can be heard confronting Arum over his pay dispute with undisputed lightweight champion Teofimo Lopez in light of complications regarding his first title defence against George Kambosos Jr, which has since been snapped up by Matchroom Boxing and DAZN after Triller failed to deliver the fight.
“Shut the f*** up you little p****, yeah you p****. Go on, get him out of here. Move him out of here.”
Coppinger was then removed from the media huddle and he later hit back at Arum over his comments on Abdo via Twitter.
“Not cool of Arum. Kate does a great job,” he tweeted, in response to the video of Arum berating the presenter.
Fury and Wilder go head to head on Saturday night in Las Vegas with the WBC heavyweight world title up for grabs.
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