By Scott Gilfoid: Unbeaten Anthony Joshua (14-0, 14 KOs) has had his way since turning pro a couple of years ago in winning 14 straight contests. Joshua hasn’t had to worry about incoming fire from his opponents, because half of them were near or over 40-years-old and just terrible fighters. But tonight all of that changes, as Joshua is finally going to be in the ring with a talented and young fighter in Dillian Whyte (16-0, 13 KOs) in their battle for the vacant British heavyweight title at the O2 Arena in London, England.
The winner of the Joshua-Whyte fight moves forward to get an eventual nice life-changing payday against WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder or IBO/WBA/WBO heavyweight belt holder Tyson Fury. The loser of the Joshua vs. Whyte fight will go home to lick their wounds and damaged pride.
I’ll be a long way back to where they are now, and I’m not sure that the winner can make it back unless it’s one of those controversial decision jobs that we see all the time unfortunately.
Carl Froch, a Sky Sports analyst now, thinks that Joshua will win by a quick knockout.
“He [Joshua] is a fighting machine and if he gets that opening, it will be all over. I predict Joshua will do the job by the third, maybe even the second round,” Froch said to skysports.com.
Oh brother, Froch is making it sound like Joshua is a KO artist like Deontay Wilder, when in reality he’s an arm puncher who has built his record on fighting old timers like Michael Sprott, Kevin Johnson, Matt Skelton, Raphael Zumbano Love, Jason Gavern, Konstantin Airich, Hector Alfredo Avila, Matt Legg, and Paul Butlin. That’s 9 of Joshua’s 14 opponents. But even the young fighters that Joshua has faced weren’t any good in my view. They were just poor 3rd tier guys the whole lot of them.
The mistake that Froch is making is by extrapolating from KO numbers that Joshua got while fighting horrible opposition and then assuming that Joshua will be able to pull the same trick fighting a talent like Whyte. A smart analyst would look carefully at the guys that Joshua has fought, and then go back and look at the last time that he fought quality fighters, which was in the 2012 LONDON Olympics, and then make a prediction off of that.
Considering that Joshua appeared to lose 2 to 4 of his fights in that Olympics, I’d say that he’s going to be in deep trouble tonight when he gets inside the ring with Whyte. I’m just saying.
I’m going by what I saw from Joshua in the past, and how he’s looked as a pro. He struggled in the Olympics and got two very, very controversial decisions over Roberto Cammarelle and Erislandy Savon. As a pro, Joshua just looks like a slow weight lifter to me, and I don’t see any explosiveness from him. He just throws arm punches and overwhelms his elderly opposition with punches.
“I rate Dillian Whyte very highly. I also rate Anthony Joshua. They are very good young, hungry prospects,” David Haye said to skysports.com. “Dillian Whyte was able to get a victory early on in Joshua’s career. I don’t believe it’s going to work out like that again for him. Not because he’s not that good, I believe they are both very good, I just believe that current form is coming through Anthony Joshua. If it does go, it’s probably early. I think Joshua will win the fight in the first three rounds,” Haye said.
I can see where it would be beneficial for Haye if Joshua did win the fight, because it would help setup a big money fight between them in the future. Joshua has the hype behind him because he won a gold medal in the 2012 LONDON Olympics.
It doesn’t matter that Joshua’s gold medal win as controversial. The British boxing public would likely jump at the chance of purchasing tickets for a fight between Haye and Joshua someday. But I think Haye is kidding himself if he believes that Joshua is going to beat Whyte, and I think he’s kidding himself even worse if he thinks that Joshua will score a quick knockout.
It’s definitely in Joshua’s best interest to try and get a quick stoppage tonight because if the fight goes past the 3rd round, I see Joshua gassing out because he’s carrying too much muscle and doesn’t have the body frame to be fighting 10 to 12 round fights in my view. I see Joshua’s physique being worse for him than Frank Bruno’s heavily muscled frame was for him during his pro career.