Daniel Dubois 'suing' legendary promoter Don King as details and statements emerge

Daniel Dubois is reportedly suing Hall of Fame promoter Don King for an alleged breach of contract after Don King’s promotion failed to pay the Brit following his victory over Trevor Bryan on June 11. ‘Dynamite’ knocked out King’s fighter Bryan in the fourth round of a one-sided affair to claim the WBA (regular) heavyweight title at the Casino Miami Jai-Alai in Miami, USA.

King won the right to promote the fight at a WBA purse bid on March 21 with an offer of $3,116,001 (2.5m) to beat a bid of $2,503,000 (£2m) from Dubois’ promoter Frank Warren. Under the terms of the purse bid, Bryan was entitled to 55 per cent (£1.4m) and Dubois was due 45 per cent (£1.1m). But according to Dubois’ attorney, his client has not received his agreed purse.

“The fighter hasn’t gotten paid and when boxers get in the ring and risk their lives the most important obligation of the promoter, the sanctioning body and the commission is to see that they are paid, and that hasn’t been done here,” Leon Margules, Dubois’ attorney, told Big Fight Weekend.

According to the lawsuit obtained by Dan Rafael, Dubois is suing for somewhere between £380,000 and £770,000. Dubois was expected to pay three per cent of his purse (£34,000) to the WBA for sanctioning fees while a further 30 per cent (£344,000) was to be deducted on his behalf as income withholding tax. Then, a sum of £984 was supposed to be paid as part of a WBA manager license fee for his manager Martin Bowers’ involvement. 

Before a final payment of £390,000 was to be paid by Queensberry Promotions (Dubois’ promotional company) to Don King Promotions as a license fee for broadcasting rights to the event in the United Kingdom, with BT Sport airing the fight card. As a result, Dubois was due a total take home of £380,000. However, Dubois will be unable to pay these fees without his purse.

“To date, DKP has yet to pay any purse monies due Dubois despite demand, and despite the State of Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation opening an investigation of DKP,” continued Dubois’ attorney. 

The lawsuit disclosed that Dubois and his team have attempted to reach out to King to retrieve the money and that even the British Boxing Board of Control, which regulates boxing in the United Kingdom, has tried to assist in the process.

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“On both June 23, 2022, and July 6, 2022, Robert Smith, the President of the British Board of Boxing Control, emailed Patrick Cunningham, the Executive Director of the Florida Athletic Commission, to put it on notice that he was aware of DKP failing to pay Dubois his purse monies and requesting the Commission’s assistance in helping to secure Dubois’ full purse,” read the lawsuit. 

“To date, DKP has still yet to provide payment of any purse monies to Dubois. … DKP’s failure to pay Dubois constitutes a breach of its obligations under the Bout Agreement and is a violation of Florida Law.”

Now, King’s attorney, Tony Gonzalez, has responded, telling Big Fight Weekend: “DKP has made all requisite payments towards Mr. Dubois’ purse. Pursuant to Florida State Athletic Commission Director Patrick Cunningham’s instructions, proof of payment in the form of the payment for the 30% IRS backup withholding was provided along with $475,000 setoff towards Mr. Dubois’ purse at the instruction of Mr. Dubois’ promoter, Queensbury.

“Additionally, and at the instruction of Mr. Cunningham, an escrow deposit was made in the amount of $134,000.00 representing a final balance due Mr. Dubois after applying a setoff of $319,000 for outstanding monies owed DKP by Mr. Warren. Also, all sanction fees owed by Mr. Dubois were paid in full to the WBA.”

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