Joseph Parker has signed a “long-term deal” with promoter Ben Shalom’s Boxxer company, and will be fighting on Sky Sports for the foreseeable future.
This almost certainly ends any ongoing negotiations for Parker to fight Joe Joyce, which Frank Warren had announced would happen in July, but was then pushed back to a possible September date when Andy Lee — Parker’s trainer — suddenly noticed that his wife had been pregnant for a while and would be due around the July date.
After that, representatives for Parker (30-2, 21 KO) noted that he hadn’t actually signed to fight Joyce, and would also be interested in a rematch with Dillian Whyte.
It should be noted that while Whyte has fought every major bout of his career under the Matchroom banner, he and Eddie Hearn have noted several times that Whyte does not actually have a Matchroom contract. In theory, Whyte could sign a deal with Boxxer, or simply just make a deal for a Parker rematch with Boxxer and Sky.
The Sky boxing product has struggled since Hearn took the Matchroom stable to DAZN in the United Kingdom as well as around the world, and Ben Shalom is a young promoter doing his best to get some things going for that brand now. It’s all a work in progress, but Parker could be a good pick-up for sure.
“Obviously we’ve been focused on signing the Olympians, signing the future of the sport. And for us, it was, ‘Now, where are the headliners coming from? (Who’s coming) in the heavyweight division,” Shalom said.
“We’ve been a big admirer of Joseph Parker for a long time, and we feel he’s got his best years ahead of him. I’m delighted to announce a long-term deal with Joseph Parker, Boxxer and Sky Sports. Bring it on.”