Watley Provides Juicy New Details On Tyson And Where His $20M Was!
Yesterday evening, Boxingtalk.com got a call from Ted Watley shortly after he read our inside look at the lawsuit Shelly Finkel has filed, but "not served", against him. Watley wanted to come on the record to get a few more things off his chest and told Boxingtalk, "I have never had a conversation with Don King in regards to Mike Tyson. Our arrangement was very simple. Shelly Finkel and I were trying to go out and obtain as much money as we could for Tyson's next fight. Shelly Finkel had reached out and met with the gentleman Tony Brown, who did not take to Finkel at all. He wanted to meet with me instead. I told him, 'I'd be glad to meet with you as long as Shelly Finkel would be at the table.' I was not going to exclude Shelly because he and I had an arrangement and I was honoring that arrangement. Brown agreed. So Shelly and I went to Las Vegas, Nevada and met with Tony Brown and he wanted to do a multi-fight deal with Mike Tyson. Everything was going fine with the negotiation, he had agreed to five fights. He agreed to the amount of money, $20,000,000 for the fighter's we spoke about earlier, which were (Antonio) Tarver, (Lamon) Brewster and we had to come up with a third fight because Shelly didn't want to involve the Klitschko as part of the deal. So we had to come to a third fight that we mutually agreed upon. Supposedly, if the fight wouldn't generate $20M, the lowest it would go is $15,000,000. What came to be an issue was, in the middle of the negotiation Shelly did something that I thought was totally unfair, and that was telling Tony Brown after they got so much of their money back, when does Tyson come back in to the deal. I didn't understand it, they didn't understand it and I asked Shelly to leave the room."
"He and I went outside to speak privately. I said Shelly, 'what in the hell are you talking about?' He said, 'suppose those guys paid Mike $20M and they make $100M.' I said, 'Shelly you should be happy with whatever they make because they're gambling.' They're gambling on Mike Tyson. They're paying him $20M and we should be happier than hell. And not only that, they even agreed to give him a signing bonus of $5M. 'What in the hell would you tell you those guys when do we come back in for? It's not right, I'm not standing for it and when we go back upstairs, let's stick to our agreement, I do the talking and you do the listening. That was our agreement since they invited me to the table and not him.
"Anyway, that deal fell apart. Behind that Murad Muhammad offered the same deal. $20M a fight, $3M signing bonus. Shelly Finkel did everything in his power to not let that happen. He was saying that he felt Murad and I were too close. Murad and I made him feel uncomfortable because of our relationship. He came up with every excuse in the book. I said to Shelly, 'what the hell would you care about me and someone else's relationship as long as our fighter is getting paid and making as much money as he can make?'
'I'm just uncomfortable Ted, I don't know if Murad has that kind of experience.'
"Are you kidding me Shelly? You don't know if Murad Muhammad can handle a PPV event? Don King and Murad Muhammad did the first PPV event ever in boxing. It got so upsetting, this non-stop bickering. Without us knowing it, Murad Muhammad went to Bob Arum and asked him to join him with doing the fights. When Murad told me that, I immediately told Finkel.
"And you think Finkel would be happy, but he got worse."
"It wasn't that Finkel cared about who was promoting the fight, what he cared about was being in charge. Being in control, with nothing happening unless he had the final word. He even went as far as calling up Tarver and telling Tarver that he was worth $8M to fight Tyson, knowing that if Arum and Muhammad went to him with $5M, which they were intending to do, would hurt the fight from happening because he'd be stuck on the $8M-10M Shelly was talking about."
"I said to Shelly, 'That was wrong. What right do we have to go to a fighter that a promoter, whose putting up the money is going to have to go to, just to convince him that he's worth more than what he's worth?' I said, 'That is the worst move I have ever seen, you're wrong.' He wound up blowing that deal because he couldn't divulge that they had a deal with us until after the Louisville fight because if they people in Louisville found out that he signed another deal, they wouldn't do the Louisville fight.
"He made them stay quiet and said he would talk to the networks for them but he didn't want it to go public. While he went into to Louisville and shook them people down in the manner that I said...because anybody, you talk to anybody that knows anything about boxing, let alone promoting Mike Tyson. Just talk to someone who knows about boxing, there's no way that you could promote any fight in thirty days or less. It's virtually impossible to do so. He took those people's money in Louisville knowing that they had less than thirty days to promote that fight.
"And he did this knowing that he had a solid $20,000,000 on the table to wait for September."
"For him to bring Don King's name up in a complaint, as if we had a conversation about Don King, that has been Shelly Finkel's move against Tyson ever since I met him."GL: So you're saying Mike Tyson would have made $20M had he decided to sit tight for another 90 days?
Ted Watley: "He would have made $20M with an additional $3M as a signing bonus, so he would have made $23,000,000.GL: So why didn't you guys scratch the Louisville fight and wait for the big money?
Ted Watley: "That's the perfect question. If he would have done the fight with Bob Arum on July 30, do you think he would have been able to go back and PPV it again on August 1? Do you think he would have been able to PPV again and then put it underneath Pelullo's fight? Do you think he would have been able to tell the promoter that you don't have any rights to the fight under a live event? Would he have been able to tell Arum he doesn't have a right to the foreign sales? Would he have been able to take that right? No sensible businessman in the world would have done that except someone who doesn't know anything about boxing.
"He wasn't concerned with Mike Tyson, he was concerned with Shelly Finkel. Now, what he does is, he tells Mike Tyson when someone wants to do a deal that he wouldn't be in control of, he says, ' That's a Don King man! Don King sent him! Don King is behind this!' Now you see him using Don King's name in a lawsuit when Don King's name never came up to Ted Watley in any shape, fashion or form.
"Call Murad Muhammad and Bob Arum, I guarantee you they're going to tell you what I just said. Matter fact, I arranged it so Bob Arum's man could go out to Arizona to watch Mike Tyson train and talk to Mike Tyson. I arranged that. Ask Bob Arum and Murad Muhammad and see what they tell you."GL: Now that you've read the claim Finkel has filed...
TW: (cutting in) "I have yet to be served by Shelly Finkel. I hear there's a lawsuit out there, but I have yet to be served by Shelly Finkel. I'm going to sue Shelly Finkel myself but I'm not going to air my laundry on an internet site until it's done. I assure your readers that once we file you will have a copy for yourself. And if you're talking about slander, this man has done nothing but slander me in his articles.
"If I am entitled to 50% of the revenue that Shelly Finkel earns, and he uses the words that I loaned him money. What he's saying to you is, that he loaned me my own money! That's racketeering! If I owe you money and I'm your financial partner and when we make money you're entitled to half of it, but now you're turning it around telling people I loaned Watley money...what money did you loan me? What money did you pay me and what money did Watley give you?
"Shelly Finkel was out! Mike Tyson didn't have any relationship with Shelly Finkel when I came on board. That's why he's not answering the obvious question.
"What would make a man give a guy 50% of his earning?"
"This man has really put himself in a position to show the boxing community just what kind of individual we've been dealing with. Muhammad Ali said it best, 'Boxing isn't the problem, the people in boxing are.' GL: You're entitled to 50% of what Finkel makes on Tyson, but have you ever seen Finkel's agreement with Tyson?
TW: "If you could believe this, when this agreement was originally done Shelly asked me if I wanted to be on the agreement with him and Mike, or if I wanted a seperate agreement. I told Finkel to do whatever he wanted and I also told Shelly that if he walked, I'd walked. I believed in Shelly Finkel and I believed he was the honest man he potrayed himself to be. I don't know what his contract with Tyson says. He's never showed it to me. What he claimed was the contract, now we find out that it wasn't.
"Anybody in business with someone on any endeavor is entitled to an accurate accounting after the business has been done. Shelly Finkel would say to you as he's said to me..'You don't take my word for it, do you believe me? Do you think I'm lying to you? This is not about showing trust, this about showing the books and making it clear. This man is a liar and this man is a very deceptive individual.
"He just happened to run across a guy who is not intimidated is a just a tad smarter than he is. I'm taking this man into federal court and I hope he lies there. That's a good place to lie at."
"Finkel needs to answer the obvious questions, how much money is he making off Mike Tyson and what was he paying Watley for? Those are the questions he won't answer."
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