Charles Martin: I’m not afraid of muscles [Joshua]

By Boxing News - 02/19/2016 - Comments

Image: Charles Martin: I’m not afraid of muscles [Joshua]By Scott Gilfoid: IBF heavyweight champion Charles Martin (23-0-1, 21 KOs) says he wanted to fight unbeaten Anthony Joshua (15-0, 15 KOs) a long time. Martin saw something in the 6’6” Joshua that made him want to get him inside the ring. That’s why Martin threw the 26-year-pld Joshua a bone by choosing to fight him next without him earning the shot first by becoming the IBF mandatory challenger.

As of now, Joshua is ranked at No.4 by the IBF and Martin didn’t need to fight him if he didn’t want to. Martin says he’s not afraid of big muscles, which is clearly a shot at Joshua. If you look at Joshua’s physique, he looks like a bodybuilder, and he also looks like someone who could punch holes through walls.

However, Joshua isn’t a real big puncher though. He’s an arm puncher much like Martin, and he wins his fights by landing an accumulation of blows rather than landing single KO blows the way that Deontay Wilder and David Haye score knockouts.

Martin isn’t worried about Joshua’s power, because he feels he’s got power of his own in both fists. Martin, 29, has a sensational 88 percent knockout percentage as a pro. I mean, that’s obviously not as good as Joshua’s 100% KO percentage, but Martin has faced better competition than Joshua, so that makes more impressive.

Joshua and Marin will be fighting in two months from now on April 9 at the O2 Arena in London, UK. Martin is doing Joshua a big favor by choosing to fight him in his own country rather than forcing him to come to the United States to fight him in one of the big cities over there.

“I’ve got dynamite in both hands. TNT, baby. I’m a nice humble guy with an alter-ego, I’m a killer inside the ring,” Martin said to “I’m not worried or afraid of muscles and big people. I come from the streets in St. Louis, having to fight every day as a kid.”

So there it is. Martin comes from the mean streets where he had to fight frequently while growing up. He’s not going to be afraid of muscles. What Martin isn’t saying is that muscles don’t translate into punching power. In fact, having a lot of muscles takes away your power by slowing you down and preventing you from getting the most hand speed you can from your shots.

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If you look at Martin’s physique, he’ll obviously never be mistaken for being a bodybuilder. Martin’s muscles are perfectly designed for punching. That’s what makes him so good. His punching power has been honed from years of boxing rather than weightlifting, and that makes him an incredibly hard puncher. We saw what Martin did to his last opponent Vyacheslav Glazkov last January on the Deontay Wilder vs. Artur Szpilka fight card.

“That’s why I didn’t want to wait to give him a mandatory shot. I said ‘hey, I’m going to give it to him right now.’” Martin said. “I’ve called him out and given him the shot. Come get it! That speaks volumes. In the situation I come out victorious, I always have done. There’s something about being backed into a corner. This is my livelihood now and I’m not going to allow anybody to take my livelihood away.”

Did you read that. Martin is talking about being backed in the corner by Joshua, and he’s not going to let him take his livelihood away. You know what happens when you back someone in the corner. They come out fighting tooth and nail and look to take you out. I wouldn’t want to back a dangerous puncher like Martin in the corner because he’s just too powerful to be messed with.

Peter Fury, the trainer for unbeaten IBO/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Tyson Fury, is predicting that Martin will beat Joshua. He thinks it’s too soon for Joshua to be fighting a guy as powerful and as advanced as Martin is. I think Peter is right. This is a bad fight for Joshua given the gawd awful opposition that his promoter Eddie Hearn has been putting in there with him since he turned pro in 2013. Martin is the wrong fighter for Joshua to be fighting right now. Instead of fighting Martin, Joshua should be fighting the likes of Malik Scott and Jarrell Miller. I think those guys would be a big step up for Joshua from the guys he’s been fighting.

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