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Joshua: Dillian Whyte is just another opponent

Anthony JoshuaBy Scott Gilfoid: Unbeaten #2 WBC heavyweight contender Anthony Joshua (13-0, 13 KOs) says he’s not worried about facing unbeaten KO artist Dillian Whyte (15-0, 12 KOs) later this year in December, because Joshua sees it as just another fight for him. In other words, Joshua isn’t worried at all about fighting the hard hitting Whyte, even though he batted Joshua around the ring when the two of them fought each other six years ago. Joshua says he’s not even bothered if he loses the fight to Whyte.

Joshua chocks the loss up to Whyte being more experienced at the time than he was. However, Joshua doesn’t appear to have improved as a fighter in all of those years, so it’s hard to see how anything will be different the second time around.

“He’s just another opponent when I get past Gary Cornish. Friends? No, nothing. There never was. We knew each other through the industry,” Joshua said via Soccer AM via “We [Whyte] boxed as amateurs and he beat me when he had vast experience as a kickboxer,” Joshua said.

In looking at the Joshua vs. Whyte fight from 2009, I didn’t see kicks from Whyte. I saw a lot of punches from him in scoring two knockdowns of Joshua. The thing is Joshua was faster back then. I mean, he wasn’t even close to being fast of hand, but he was definitely a lot faster than he is now. Joshua has since packed on 30 pounds of muscle with most of going to his upper body through weight lifting. As you would guess when you put on a lot of body building style muscles, it slows you down dramatically, especially when you put on 30 pounds like Joshua did.

I think the outcome of a second fight between Joshua and Whyte could be even more stacked in Whyte’s favor than the first fight, because there won’t be a 4 round limit, and there won’t be head gear to get in the way of a stoppage. All that muscle weight that Joshua has put on is weight that he’s going to need to carry into the deep rounds of the fight. Putting on a lot of weight in a short period of time, whether it be muscle or fat, is really hard on your heart.

It’s difficult for your heart to pump blood to all that extra tissue. That’s why body building types generally don’t do very well in boxing, because it’s a sport that is made for aerobic type athletes. Joshua has a lot of time to strip off the muscles that he’s put on before he faces Whyte in November or December, but I don’t expect him to do that. If anything, I suspect that Joshua will put on even more muscle and likely be at 260 or 270 by the time he gets inside the ring with Whyte. Hopefully, someone talks some sense to Joshua to stop with the weight lifting and realize that this isn’t a body building contest he’s entering.

“I went on to do good things as an amateur and as I turned pro people said, ‘Dillian is coming for you’. Come on now, I’m not worried about anyone,” Joshua said. “Losing is never a good thing. But if I lose, it won’t dishearten me. Everyone tastes failure in life, nobody is superhuman.”

Oh look, Joshua is already rationalizing about a future defeat at the hands of Whyte. I don’t buy it for a second that a loss for Joshua won’t be a big deal if he gets beaten by Whyte. If Joshua doesn’t take a defeat seriously at the hands of Whyte, then that kind of makes you wonder how engaged Joshua is for this kind of profession. If Joshua can take it or leave if he wins or loses, then perhaps he should look to go into another profession that he has more passion about. Most fighters care a great deal if they lose a fight, and they don’t just see it as one of those things.

“Whether it’s in the public domain or in your private life, you will face failure, and it’s how you bounce back that determines who you are,” Joshua said.

I think Joshua is kidding himself. A loss to Whyte will put Joshua is a hole that he’ll need to dig himself out of, and I don’t think he’s going to be able to do that with his promoter Eddie Hearn feeding him 3rd tier fodder over and over again for the next two years to build him back up from the defeat.

Joshua will be fighting Gary Cornish (21-0, 12 KOs) for the vacant Commonwealth heavyweight title on September 12th at the O2 Arena in London, UK. Dillian Whyte will be on the same card against an opponent still to be determined. The idea about having Whyte and Joshua on the same card is to help build up their fight in December.

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