Queensland heavyweight Demsey McKean could hold the key to promoter Matchroom Boxing’s expansion into Australia.
If Matchroom boss Eddie Hearn is to be believed, his loves of cricket and holding stadium shows has him dreaming of staging an event at Brisbane’s Gabba.
Hearn knows he needs a big fish to sell roughly 40,000 tickets and two-time heavyweight champion and global superstar Anthony Joshua fits the bill perfectly.
As Matchroom launches in Australia with an event in Brisbane on Saturday, Hearn is already working out how he can make a big splash in the local market.
A blockbuster heavyweight clash between Joshua and the undefeated McKean (21-0) could be the answer.
Now bas in the UK, McKean, who is ranked in the top 15 in both WBO and IBF, returns to Australia to take on Patrick Korte as part of the undercard to Liam Paro vs. Brock Jarvis at the South Bank Piazza.
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Since arriving in Australia, Hearn has told everyone who’ll listen of his plans for a Gabba show, naming McKean as one half of the potential bill.
“We could do it early next year,” Hearn told reporters this week.
“You’ve got Anthony Joshua, who’s looking to fight internationally.
“If Demsey McKean looks good on Saturday- you need to bring a big star to fill the Gabba and you do that in the heavyweight division.
“If Demsey wins on Saturday, he’s going to land himself a big fight.
“Whether it’s Dillian Whyte, whether it’s AJ, whether it’s [Derek] Chisora.”
While McKean has to get past the 18-1-1 Korte first, the 32-year-old southpaw has good reason to believe he can mix it with the heavyweight elite.
Signed to Matchroom, McKean has had the opportunity to spar Joshua and Whyte, as well as WBA champion Daniel Dubois, among others.
“Looking at getting a possible fight against Dillian Whyte and AJ, these are two of the biggest names in the boxing world at the moment,” McKean said on Thursday.
“I’ve been in camp with both those guys and I give them good, hard rounds and I would go into that fight very confident, let me tell you.
“The sparring I give these guys, I’d be very confident if that fight does come around.”
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As for the possibility of a blockbuster stadium fight in his home state, McKean would relish the shot.
“Me and AJ at the Gabba, couldn’t be a better fight,” he told Sporting News.
“Perfect for me and I think the Australian public would go mad for that. Who wouldn’t?”
McKean is currently Australia’s highest ranked heavyweight but, despite a host of big domestic fights taking place recently, the Ipswich product hasn’t received the same level of attention as some local fighters.
However, the 6’6” man mountain isn’t too fussed.
“That’s what happens when you move away,” he added.
“I’ve outgrown Australia and I moved overseas for that reason.
“These guys can fight amongst themselves in Australia until they get on to the level I’m on.
“Eddie’s been mentioning my name against the likes of Dillian Whyte, Anthony Joshua and Derek Chisora.
“There’s no other heavyweight in Australia that’s getting that kind of public attention, so I think that speaks volumes about the level that I’m on.
“I’m 21-0 and top rated heavyweight in two governing bodies, that’s it.”
Watch McKean, and Paro vs. Jarvis, live and exclusive on DAZN.