Top Rank Chairman and Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum wasn’t feeling the Fury vs. Wilder III press conference yesterday in Las Vegas.
Arum is Fury’s American promoter, and he was upset at what he considered bias facilitation of the last sit-down between the two heated rivals.
— MTK Global Boxing (@MTKGlobal) October 6, 2021
According to Arum, PBC on FOX interviewer Kate Abdo was “slanting all of the press conference to Wilder.” However, Arum’s post-presser rant was the cherry on top of a very charged boxing cake baked for this Saturday.
Abdo, who has appeared on the primary host desk during boxing broadcasts for Fox Sports and streaming service DAZN, held court between the two heavyweights. However, the always unhinged Tyson Fury went off the rails insulting Wilder, who has been relatively silent during the pre-fight build-up.
Bob Arum incredibly critical of @kate_abdo. Says she was biased towards Deontay Wilder and knew they weren’t having a face off.
— Greg Rosenstein (@grosenstein) October 6, 2021
While Fury took shots at Wilder for his carousel of past opinions about Fury’s performance-enhancing drug status, he paced while Wilder sat. Visibly charged, Fury did his typical round of fight hype, and Wilder defended himself, countering verbal jabs at every chance.
Still, Fury dominated the onslaught, and Abdo seemed to be losing control as Fury paced and would not respond to her attempts to calm him. Then she alerted them that they were running out of time and would attempt to stage the two fighters for a faceoff.
Luckily, the two enemies didn’t face off, but the mention was enough for 89-year-old Arum to feel that Abdo almost cost him the event.
“These freakin’ people from Fox, they don’t know crap,” said Arum. “They bring this woman in from the U.K., and she’s slanting all of the press conference to Wilder. I don’t give a damn, but it’s obvious that’s what she was doing. She knew that the understanding was no faceoff.”
Wilder fights under the Premier Boxing Champions banner. However, Bob Arum has a deal with ESPN+ subscription service for his fighters like Fury. In cases like this, the two broadcast entities compromise and jointly show the event. Abdo hosting the press conference was likely a concession of the compromise.
Arum didn’t stop there and gave Abdo the ultimate disrespect by cursing in his angst during the media scrum.
“Tom Brown [of TGB Promotions] argued with Fox for no faceoff. We said no faceoff. What does she say? ‘We’re going to do a faceoff. F*&k her and F*&k them! No faceoff and we saved the fight.”
Abdo responded to the disparagement on her Instagram Stories.
“With regards to the faceoff – 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 his 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.”
Everyone Can Get It
Additionally, Arum’s rapid-fire ire came at ESPN boxing journalist Mike Coppinger. Arum pulled no punches when confronted while answering questions about the volleyball of negotiations for his unified lightweight champion Teofimo Lopez’s defense against George Kambosos.
— The Fite Zone 🥊🤼♂️ (@TheFiteZone) October 6, 2021
Coppinger critically pointed out that the mandatory purse bid that stalled the fight happened after Lopez and Arum couldn’t make a deal. Arum was not feeling that.
“Shut the f*&k up, you little prick!”
Whether it’s the tense boxing rivalry atmosphere in the desert this week or Arum is just not feeling it, he was not the one to play with yesterday.