Matchroom will promote the eagerly anticipated Michael Conlan [16(8)-0] vs Leigh Wood [25(15)-2] WBA ‘regular’ world title fight and ‘final eliminator’.
Eddie Hearn put in the highest offer at today’s purse bids to earn the right to promote the fight.
It means DAZN will broadcast the world-level featherweight contest and Matchroom will decide where the clash will take place.
Hearn confirmed the news this evening and revealed official details will be confirmed soon.
Matchroom bid $1.5 million, which beat Top Rank’s offer of $1.2 million. Wood is entitled to 55% as defending titlist ($825k), while will pocket Conlan 45% ($675k).
The World Boxing Association confirmed in late August they had ordered Wood to defend his WBA ‘regular’ world title against the Belfast fighter – and they had given both parties until September 27 to agree on terms.
Two extension requests were granted since but terms are still not agreed, meaning purse bids will took place via zoom today.
The winner of the proposed clash will become mandatory for former Carl Frampton foe Santa Cruz the current champion with the WBA.
However, considering the American ‘Super’ champ hasn’t defended the title since February of 2019 and has since fought up at super feather – his last fight a heavy knockout defeat suffered at the gloves of Gervonta Davis nearly a year ago – it’s quite possible he may vacate or be stripped. Indeed, he may have outgrown the weight or feel he is beyond mandatory defences, which could lead to Conlan v Wood being upgraded to the main world title fight.
The fight was initially set to take place in December and Irish-boxing.com understands Conlan Boxing were very close to tempting Wood to come to Belfast before the year was out. However, an injury to the titleholder scuppered those plans and the fight now looks more likely for the Spring.
With that in mind St Patrick’s Day and New York looked a cert if Top Rank won the bids. However, things went the way of Hearn and the destination remains a thing of mystery.
Wood is from Nottingham but has no massive ticket selling previous, surprisingly Belfast may be an option. Although Hearn doesn’t promote Conlan he has recently signed Caoimhin Agyarko and promotes James Tennyson and Tommy McCarthy. The Matchroom boss could make a strong local card while using Conlan’s pulling power to do tickets and introduce his Belfast Boys to the wider public,