Wladimir: I’ll help Joshua up after I beat him; Roach wants Pacquiao to KO Horn – News
By Scott Gilfoid: Former heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko (64-4, 53 KOs) is saying that he’ll hurt Anthony Joshua (18-0 18 KOs) up off the canvas after he beats him this month in their big fight on Sky Box Office pay-per-view, HBO and Showtime Championship Boxing from the giant Wembley Stadium in London, England. Wladimir talks about having a gene that makes him want to compete.
Unfortunately for Wladimir, he hasn’t competed in the sport in a long, long time since 2015, and he didn’t do so well in his last fight in losing to the light hitting Tyson Fury. Wladimir looked like he still had the skills, but not the nerve. He wasn’t willing to throw punches in that fight. Some think that Wladimir was afraid of getting hit with a counter shot from Fury.
Joshua, 27, brags about never having been beaten before as a pro. What Joshua doesn’t say is that he’s not been fighting good opposition. Like Gennady Golovkin, Joshua has been carefully matched against beatable guys. Wladimir, 41, is a huge step up for Joshua from the guys that his promoter Eddie Hearn has been putting in the ring with him.
We’re talking guys like Eric Molina, Dominic Breazeale, Charles Martin and Dillian Whyte. Those are decent fringe contender type of opposition, but not the true quality. Joshua’s boxing fans still showed up in huge masses to see him dispatch those guys without complaint. The fans didn’t turn up their noses at Joshua’s mismatches against those fighters like they might have gone if it were another fighter.
“When you win, I’ll congratulate you. When you lose, I’ll help you back up,” said Klitschko to Joshua in ‘The Gloves are Off’ special coming up on Sunday. “I have this competitive gene in me. I’m totally aware of all the jeopardy and danger and all this,” said Wladimir.
This has got to be more than a little strange for Joshua and Klitschko to be fighting each other, as they sparred with one another in 2014.
Wladimir had Joshua come to his training camp to help him get ready for his title defense against Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev on November 15, 2014 in Hamburg, Germany. Wladimir destroyed Pulev in 5 rounds. It’s hard to believe that fight was only 3 fights ago for Wladimir, but he hasn’t been active for the last 2 years due to him spending ages negotiating a rematch with Tyson Fury and then having to deal with him postponing their fight because of an injury. Fury finally just pulled out of the match with Wladimir entirely due to personal problems.
There was talk that the sparring sessions between Joshua and Klitschko were competitive ones where neither guy did better. If that’s the reality, then it’s bad news for Joshua, because it means that Wladimir may have too much talent for him to bum rush and stomp like he’s been doing against the mediocre opposition that he’s been dining on since he turned pro. Wladimir has the potential to drag the 6’6” Joshua into the deeper rounds of their fight to expose his stamina issues. Joshua has put a lot of work in building up his physique in the last 4 years of his pro career, and he’s put on 25 pounds of muscle. Joshua started his career at 225, and he’s now hovering around 250.
That’s a lot of weight for a fighter to weigh when they have a ton of muscle. That muscle could cause Joshua to fade badly against Wladimir in the later rounds. It might have been better if Joshua burns that useless muscle off and went back to 220-225, so that he could have some hand speed and stamina. Right now, Joshua looks like he has a lot of beach muscle, but not productive muscle that you want to compete with. I’m just saying.
“I’ve watched Wladimir for years coming up in the game,”said Joshua. “He’s the real deal. He’s proved it. I need this type of competition to show the world what I’m all about. The potential is real,” said Joshua.
Joshua is correct in him needing the kind of competition that he’ll be receiving from Wladimir on April 29. Joshua needs a MAJOR upgrade in competition because he’s not fighting good enough fighters to see whether his potential is real or if he’s just another heavily muscled fighter with stamina problems.
“I haven’t experienced losing as a professional, so I don’t know that feeling. I’m going for the knockout. That’s what I do,” said Joshua in talking about his fight with Klitschko in 2 weeks.
Joshua shouldn’t gloat too much about him not having tasted the bittersweet taste of defeat at the pro level, because it’s not as if he’s fought talented fighters. I mean, Joshua was fighting a heck of a lot better fighters in the amateur ranks compared to the fodder that he’s been fed at the pro level. We all saw how Mihai Nistor was able to knockout Joshua in 2011.
The hard hitting Romanian southpaw had too much power and too tricky of a style for Joshua to deal with. Nistor didn’t do anything special to beat Joshua other than using head movement on the way in, and committing 100% to every punch he threw. Nistor was not throwing weak shots. He was giving everything he had to his punches when he was coming forward against Joshua.
The other thing that made Nistor successful was he was throwing combinations when he would come forward. Nistor always made sure that he threw at least 3 hard and fast shots. Joshua was sometimes able to block the first one, but the other 2 punches would hit home. Joshua was staggering by the 3rd round, and the fight had to be stopped. I don’t know if Wladimir can do what Nistor did though, because it takes courage and some conviction to stick with the game plan.
Joshua and Wladimir are both Olympic gold medalists. That’s kind of nice. However, Joshua’s 2012 gold medal was controversial to some extent. The Olympics took place in London, England in front of a fan friendly audience for Joshua, and he appeared to lose several of his fights in my opinion. When Wladimir won his gold medal for Ukraine in the 1996 Olympics, it wasn’t controversial. He dominated most of his opposition.
Wladimir will need to deal with the large pro-Joshua crowd at Wembley Stadium on April 29. That’s not going to be easy for Wladimir, because he’s been fighting most of his career in front of friendly audiences in Germany, U.S and Russia.
Freddie Roach wants Manny Pacquiao to knockout Jeff Horn
Trainer Freddie Roach thinks it’s time his fighter Manny Pacquiao (59-6-1, 38 KOs) break his dry spell of no knockouts when he defends his WBO welterweight title on July 2 against Jeff Horn (16-0-1, 11 KOs) at the Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane, Australia. Pacquiao hasn’t knocked out anyone since he stopped Miguel Cotto in the 12th round on November 14, 2009. That was 12 fights ago.
Pacquiao has had plenty weaker opposition he’s faced during that time frame that he SHOULD have been able to knock to smithereens, but he didn’t. We’re talking guys like Chris Algieri, who the talented Errol Spence flattened last year in 5 rounds. Pacquiao also has fought guys like Brandon Rios and Jessie Vargas. He should have been able to knock those fighters out.
“Manny hasn’t scored a knockout in a long time, and it’s time that changed,” Roach said to the Courier Mail. “He is working his [expletive] off for this fight and we will be keeping the world title. Manny doesn’t underestimate anyone. He knows upsets can happen in boxing and that Horn is a good puncher but we are prepared for anything. No fighter in the world has Manny’s work ethic. He runs for an hour in the morning and does 65 rounds of training in the gym every day. And he loves nothing more than entertaining big crowds. [There are] some big fights coming up for Manny in the near future. [Horn is] just the kind of opponent Manny needs to prepare for those. We’re going for the knockout,” said Roach.
It would be great if Pacquiao can knockout Horn to become the fighter that he once was. Just imagine huge buzz Pacquiao will create in the boxing world if he destroys Horn on July 2. Maybe that’s the missing ingredient that has caused Pacquiao’s recent PPV fights against Tim Bradley and Jessie Vargas to bring in less than spectacular numbers.