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Joshua says he can break Deontay Wilder’s confidence

By Jeff Aranow: Anthony Joshua (20-0, 20 KOs) has spotted a flaw in heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder’s game that he feels he can exploit when the time comes for the 2 of them to face each other in a unification fight in 2018.

Joshua says Wilder (39-0, 38 KOs) lacks a left hook and uppercut that would make him more of a threat. Joshua sees himself being able to break Wilder down to the point where he loses his confidence.

There are still a lot of things that need to take place before Joshua and Wilder meet each other inside the ring. IBF/WBA heavyweight champion Joshua needs to defeat WBO belt holder Joseph Parker in a unification fight in early next year, as long as the fight gets made. For his part, Wilder will need to defend his WBC title against unbeaten #3 WBC Luis ‘King Kong’ Ortiz (28-0, 24 KOs) in March of next year.

If Joshua and Wilder both win their next fights, their management will have to try and negotiate a fight between them for the summer. That might prove to be even more difficult to accomplish than for the two champions to win their next fights.

Joshua said this to Sky Sports News:

“Wilder I think would be next (toughest after Fury) just for the sheer fact that I think his record proves that he has a powerful punch,” said Joshua.”But he’s powerful punch doesn’t come with an uppercut, it doesn’t come with a peach left hook – it just comes with a straight right hand. You kind of chip the tree down with Wilder and I think he starts losing his confidence.”

The Wilder vs. Joshua fight could come to a very fast conclusion. If Joshua connect with something big, it’s going to lead to Wilder launching his right hands with full force. This fight could end in the same way the Lennox Lewis vs. Donovan ‘Razor’ Ruddock fight ended in October 1992. It was supposed to be a competitive fight, but Lewis quickly stopped Razor with a hard right hand to the head in the 2nd round. Joshua could do the same thing to Wilder. If Joshua lands a big right hand first, it might be too much for Wilder to take. If Wilder is hurt, he could end up too jello-legged to get back up and continue fighting.

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Joshua has these things going for him against Wilder:

Weight – Joshua weighed 254 pounds for his last fight against Carlos Takam compared to Wilder’s 220 lbs. Having 34 lb. weight advantage is a positive for Joshua if he can use his size to overpower Wilder.

Punch resistance – Joshua seems to stand up to big shots better than Wilder does. Joshua doesn’t get shaken up too often in his fights despite showing that he’s got a leaky defense. Wilder has been staggered by seemingly weak punches during his short pro career. If Joshua can get Wilder into a fight where he needs to deal with a certain amount of give and take, he might fold

Fans – If Wilder and Joshua face each other in the future, it’s likely to take place in England rather than the U.S. Having the boxing fans on his side cheering him, it could give Joshua enough confidence to beat Wilder. The crowd played a big factor in Joshua’s win over Wladimir Wladimir last April in their fight in front of 90,000 fans at Wembley Stadium in London, UK. Wladimir was dominating the fight until Joshua was motivated by the cheering from the fans to take over in the 10th.

Wilder’s right hand is so powerful that he really doesn’t need a left hook or an uppercut. Joshua throws an uppercut, but mostly when his opponents are clinching him or fight at very close range. Joshua usually doesn’t hurt his opponents with his uppercuts or his left hooks. Joshua’s right hand does most of the damage, and he throws that from medium distance. The Joshua-Wilder fight will likely come down to which of the 2 fighters can land their right hands from the outside. Wilder has the better right hand, and he the faster hand speed of the 2. He’s the more elusive fighter as well.

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It’s still premature for Joshua to be speaking of a fight with Wilder. Until the two of them can agree to a purse split, they’re better off focusing on fights that can get made. Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn is having a hard time just trying to negotiate the fight with Joseph Parker. If a simple unification fight against Parker is going to be a major ordeal to put together for Hearn, then a match against Wilder could prove to be impossible right now.

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