TYSON FURY wants to return as early as February and will decide his next opponent when Oleksandr Usyk's future is determined.
Fury's promoter Bob Arum has admitted fighting Usyk for the undisputed title is their preferred option.
But after Anthony Joshua's defeat to the Ukrainian, the Brit chose to invoke his right to an immediate rematch.
Arum is still hopeful AJ can be convinced to step aside and allow Fury to face Usyk, but will look Dillian Whyte's way in the likely case that is not possible.
The promoter told reporters in Las Vegas: ”Here’s the story, the ball now is in Joshua’s court.
"Joshua can step aside and let Usyk fight Fury. Joshua can say no, I’ve gotta fight Usyk, and I’ve got a contract.
“So once Joshua decides, if he decides he’s going to fight Usyk, then Fury looks around for an opponent.
"I talked to him today, and if Whyte is reasonable, as far as his money, happy to fight him. If not, we'll fight Joe Joyce."
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Joshua, 32, is expected to rematch Usyk, 34, by April with talks to officially finalise it due to begin.
Meanwhile Fury, 33, has been linked with Whyte, also 33, who is the WBC 'interim' champion and in turn the mandatory challenger.
But his existing legal case against the WBC, aimed to force his overdue title shot, actually prevented him from being ordered to challenge for the belt.
Arum has stated that even without being mandated by the WBC, Whyte could still fight Fury, instead on a voluntary basis.
And the legendary promoter revealed the unbeaten Gypsy King wants to return in no later than four months' time.
He said: "I spoke to Tyson Fury – he wants to fight again by the end of February, no later than the first week or so in March. That will happen."
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