TYSON FURY will NOT face Deontay Wilder next as he will take an interim fight before pursing the rematch with the Bronze Bomber.
The Gypsy King wants to build his profile across the pond first after signing the mega-bucks deal with ESPN.
Fury recently insisted he would instruct his promoters to agree a deal with Wilder, claiming he was only interested in fighting the American next.
He said: “I ain’t interested in fighting number 10, number eight, number three, number two – I only want the best.
“So I want Deontay Wilder next – I don’t want to fight Fred Flintstone, Joe Bloggs or anybody else.”
But FOXSports’ Mike Coppinger reports the WBC has been notified that the Gypsy King, 30, is in fact lining up an interim fight in May or June.
Fury reportedly wants to build his profile in the US first having just signed a £80m deal with legendary promoter Bob Arum – which will see him fight on ESPN.
The deal was expected to derail plans for the eagerly-anticipated rematch as Wilder is a regular on rival American broadcaster – Showtime.
But Wilder claimed he is a free agent and that Fury’s move to ESPN would only make the bout more interesting.
The Gypsy King wants to make himself more popular in the US – aiming at fighting the Bronze Bomber in autumn – in order to maximise viewership for his pay-per-view fights.
Fury was estimated to pocket a whopping £20m – the best pay of his career – for the showdown with Wilder scheduled to take place on May 18 with New York.
Having signed for ESPN, he is now third on the list of the richest British sportsmen.