Joshua vs. Pulev possible for Nov.

By Boxing News - 08/30/2016 - Comments

Image: Joshua vs. Pulev possible for Nov.

By Jeff Aranow: Matchroom Sport promoter Eddie Hearn is interested in potentially making a huge heavyweight triple-header on November 26, with IBF heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua vs. Kubrat Pulev (23-1, 12 KOs) headlining at Cardiff’s Principality Stadium in late November or December. Also on the card, British heavyweights Dillian Whyte and Dereck Chisora is in play. A match between heavyweights Anthony Joshua and Joseph Parker is another one of the fights for the card. Discussions are being held for the fights, and it would be a pretty big deal if the card comes off.

Parker, 24, is Joshua’s IBF mandatory challenger, but Hearn will likely wait until early 2017 before he puts the fight together between them. In the meantime, Parker can get some valuable air time on Sky Box Office if he fights the 6’8” Price on the undercard of the Joshua-Pulev card. Price, 33, wants a title shot against Joshua, and if he can beat Parker, he would earn the fight.

It’s a long shot for Price, but at this point, he’s had too many defeats in the last three years for him to be given a title shot against Joshua without him having to earn the fight by beating a significant opponent. A win for Price against Parker would open the doors for him to get that shot. Price would appear to have a really tough fight on his hands against Parker if this fight gets made. Parker hits really hard, and Price has had problems against hard punchers in the past.

‘”It could be November 26th in Manchester but we are also looking at the possibility of a big night of heavyweight boxing at the Principality Stadium,” said Hearn to the Dailymail about Joshua’s next fight. We are talking maybe about David Price v Joseph Parker, Dillian Whyte v Dereck Chisora and then Anthony Joshua v Kubrat Pulev all bundled into one – it could be a lot of fun.”

That would be some card if Hearn can get it put together. The Chisora vs. Whyte fight could be one of the better ones on the card, as it appears to be the most competitive one of the three. Chisora and Whyte are evenly matched at this point.

Whyte looked to be the better fighter of the two before suffering a left shoulder injury recently. He’s had shoulder surgery last year, and he’s not been the same ever since that time. Whyte is mostly a one-armed fighter now, and he would be at a big advantage against a guy like Chisora, because his right hand isn’t that good.

“There are some big plans and maybe in two weeks’ time they will all be unveiled,” said Hearn.

Pulev, 35, recently defeated Chisora by a 12 round split decision to win the vacant EBU heavyweight title last May. Pulev lost to former IBF heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko by a 5th round knockout in November 2014. Pulev couldn’t handle the left hooks from Wladimir. Joshua has a pretty good left hook as well, and he might be able to take Pulev out quickly if the Bulgarian fighter hasn’t improved his game from two years ago from the Wladimir fight.

Former WBC heavyweight champion Bermane Stiverne was seen as a strong possibility for Joshua to fight next in November, but it seems like he’s no longer the leading candidate. It’s not surprising that Pulev, 6’4 1/2”, has emerged as the front runner for the Joshua fight, because he’s promoted by Sauerland Events, who Hearn frequently does business with. The two of them getting together to put a fight between Joshua and Pulev isn’t all that surprising. Besides, it’s a good fight. Making a fight against Stiverne was always going to be a difficult thing, and it’s doubtful that Hearn would have the patience to slog through the likely long negotiations needed to make that fight a reality.