Deontay Wilder has pointed fingers at Anthony Joshua and his team, holding them equally responsible for the prolonged delay in finalizing a long-awaited showdown between the two heavyweight stars.
Despite both fighters holding titles in their weight class, negotiations between the two camps previously failed to materialize into a fight agreement.
As Joshua and Wilder prepare for separate bouts this Saturday night in Saudi Arabia, where Joshua will take on Otto Wallin in the main event and Wilder will face Joseph Parker in the co-main event, the anticipation for a potential 2024 collision between the two remains high.
Past discussions between Wilder and Joshua reportedly collapsed over financial terms. However, Wilder insists that money was not the primary obstacle.
"Money hasn't been the issue. It comes with not having the heart, the will, the courage to step in the ring," Wilder stated to BBC Sport.
Expressing his views on Joshua's team, Wilder suggested that Joshua's handlers, promotion, and management played a significant role in the failed negotiations, attributing them to the reluctance to make the fight happen.
"I don't really just blame it on Joshua. I blame it on his handlers, on his promotion and his management. Because let's face it, Joshua is the cash cow of the company," Wilder asserted. "Without him, no money is drawn into Matchroom. We all know that. Not only do I feel Joshua is intimidated of me, but I feel his promoter is as well. That's why the fight hasn't happened."
With the looming bout against Parker, Wilder acknowledged the pressure surrounding him, as most discussions revolve around a potential clash with Joshua next year.
"I'm taking the biggest risk because they're looking past Parker - but I'm not," Wilder emphasized to Carl Frampton. "Joshua is the biggest fight in combat sport, period. When people talk to me, the main thing they talk about is me and him, all the time. It applies pressure because the world wants to see [it]."