A few weeks ago Tyson Fury announced that he had signed a two-fight deal to fight Anthony Joshua in 2021. During his announcement Fury thanked Daniel Kinahan, a man Irish courts name as acting boss of the country’s largest criminal enterprise, and claimed that Kinahan was responsible for getting the deal done.
Ireland’s then-Taoiseach Leo Varadkar condemned Kinahan’s involvement in the fight and called for a boycott by broadcasters. He also said his government was talking with their counterparts in the United Arab Emirates about Kinahan, who resides in Dubai.
Since then Fury, and his promoter Bob Arum, have said they will no longer negotiate through Kinahan. Kinahan has also been dumped by KHK Sports, a Bahrain royalty owned sports company who recently hired him as a special advisor. Earlier this week MTK Global, a company Kinahan co-founded, announced that Kinahan would be stepping away from boxing entirely.
Eddie Hearn, who promotes Anthony Joshua, recently addressed the fallout from the Fury vs. Joshua deal and the involvement of Kinahan in an article by The Athletic.
That outlet posed the question: “Do you appreciate or understand the anger and upset caused in Ireland by [Kinahan’s] involvement in negotiating the Anthony Joshua / Tyson Fury fight?”
“Kinahan has worked in boxing a long time and has represented Fury for about three years.” responded Hearn. His answer is contrary to what Fury’s management company MTK Global has been saying for years; that their former co-founder was no longer involved with the company or their clients.
Hearn went on to expose how involved Kinahan has been in Fury’s career, claiming that the reported crime boss was responsible for negotiating Fury’s biggest fights.
“So, when Fury signed with Queensberry Promotions, [Kinahan] did that deal. When he signed with ESPN and Top Rank, he did that deal. When he signed to fight Otto Wallin and Sefer Seferi, and when he signed to fight Wilder twice, he did those deals. So it was no surprise for me that I was asked to negotiate with Fury’s adviser for [the Joshua] fight.”
Hearn then said the “backlash” against the deal was “surprising” since—according to him—”everyone in boxing knows [Kinahan’s] role”.
Hearn further claimed that, “everybody who works in boxing has at some point either dealt with him or heard of moves he’s been making.”
“From what I’ve seen and read, the decision for him to step back and step out is because of the backlash. I don’t mean to sound cold hearted but I just want to make the undisputed fight, so if I have to negotiate with him, I negotiate with him to make the fight,” continued Hearn. “If I have to negotiate with Arum, I negotiate with him. If I have to negotiate with Warren, I’ll do that. So I was focused on doing that. Obviously now it makes it a lot easier and calmer to do that deal. But he’s been guiding Fury’s career for a long time – from a dark place to where he is now.”
According to recent tabloid press in Ireland Kinahan is a person of interest in three murder for hire plots targeting suspected members of the Hutch Gang. The Kinahan Cartel and the Hutch Gang have been warring since Gary Hutch, a former Kinahan operative, was executed in Spain in 2015.
Since then the Kinahan Cartel have killed multiple members of the Hutch Gang, including close relatives of suspected Hutch Gang leader Gerry ‘The Monk’ Hutch. The Hutch Gang allegedly responded to those killings by sending gunmen to an MTK boxing weigh-in at Dublin’s Regency Hotel in 2016.
Top Kinahan lieutenant David Byrne was killed at the Regency Hotel shooting. However, it is believed that Daniel Kinahan was the intended target. Kinahan moved to Dubai shortly after the shooting.