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Anthony Joshua: ‘Wilder DOESN’T punch hard enough to keep Fury down’

Anthony Joshua Deontay Wilder Kubrat Pulev Tyson Fury

By Charles Brun: Anthony Joshua says Deontay Wilder doesn’t punch hard enough to knock Tyson Fury down and keep him down in their rematch this month.

For that reason, AJ is going with ‘The Gypsy King’ Fury (29-0-1, 20 KOs) to “right his wrongs” from his past fight against WBC heavyweight champion Wilder (42-0-1 41 KOs), and beat him by a 12 round decision on February 22 in their rematch at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Joshua (23-1, 21 KOs) has personal reasons for wanting Fury to win the fight. He wants to fight him in the UK in a mega-clash that will get the British boxing fans amped up to see it. But Joshua obviously won’t turn down a unification fight against Wilder if he blasts Fury out on the 22nd of February.

It’s just that it’s going to be potentially problematic to put together a fight with Wilder compared with Fury, especially if AJ and his promoter Eddie Hearn start talking about slanting the purse split in their favor.

Joshua STILL insisting Fury fight MUST take place in UK

“You know me. I’m the best in the world for a reason, and I’ve been the best since I first started boxing [as a pro],” said Joshua to #PepTalkUK. “So I’ll just go in there and do what I do anyway. That’s the same thing I say about Pulev. It has to be in the UK, to be fair.

“You never let a location get in the way of a mega-fight,” said Joshua about a fight between him and Fury. “The reason I always said it would be good if Fury won [against Wilder] is because we would do the fight here [in the UK], but if it’s in America, then it makes sense for Wilder to win for me. It’s bigger an America vs. a Brit than a Brit vs. a Brit in America,” said Joshua.

So if Fury would like to fight in Vegas, then we’d have to talk about it, but me personally, it makes more sense having it in London or Manchester,” said Joshua. “It’s been 18 or 19 months since I last fought in London. So it’s been a while.

“It’s time to come back home I think. There’s the Middle East, continent of Africa,” said Joshua about wanting to fight exhibition matches.

Joshua is all over the place here in proclaiming himself the #1 heavyweight in the division. He clearly isn’t the number #1 heavyweight. That’s been established already with Joshua’s embarrassing 7th round knockout loss to Andy Ruiz Jr. in 2019. AJ is now viewed as the #3 heavyweight in the division by hardcore boxing fans, behind #1 Wilder and #2 Fury.

In an interview on Monday, Fury made it quite clear that if Joshua wants to fight him, it’ll take place in the “mecca of boxing in Las Vegas,” and NOT at Wembley Stadium in London, England.

Fury beats Wilder because he came close last time – Joshua

“Fury wins,” said Joshua in predicting Tyson Fury defeats Wilder on February 22. “A man [Fury] that nearly did it the first time, won’t get it wrong the second time. That’s the only reason why he [Wilder] came so close the first time to the point of a draw. It wasn’t like 12 rounds of a master class, and then got 12th, and got separated.

“It was a draw. I think it was that close, said Joshua on the first Wilder-Fury bout. “So I think Tyson Fury is going to correct his wrongs, and come back and win. But I don’t know what Wilder took away from his last fight he had against Tyson Fury.

“[Dominic] Breazeale is a decent campaigner, but he’s never been a world champion, and neither is [Luis] Ortiz. And before Fury, he never fought anyone decent either,” said Joshua in making light of Wilder’s two recent wins over Ortiz and Breazeale.

“Who knows? I’m trying to find logic behind what I’m saying, but I think Fury because he came so close the first time,” said Joshua in forgetting about Wilder knocking Fury out cold last time. “He [Fury] wants his hands on the belt, so he’ll probably go out there and do what he has to do to win this time.

“Nah, said Joshua when asked if Fury will knockout Wilder in 2 rounds. “I’ve just never seen that in Fury anyway,” said Joshua.

With all the money that Joshua has made in his short 7-year professional career, you have to wonder why he’s so insistent on having the Fury fight take place in the UK rather than elsewhere.

Joshua betting Wilder WON’T knockout Fury

“I don’t know if Wilder will knock Fury out in 2 rounds,” said Joshua. “If Wilder came and knocked him out in 2 rounds, it’s not really that kind of party. Fury is elite level, but he [Wilder] can do that against Breazeale. I think Breazeale is a lower tier heavyweight in my humble opinion that’s still progressing,” said Joshua in failing to give Wilder credit for knocking out Breazeale faster than he did.

“Even when he came up to the top level early in my career, he got beaten up in seven rounds,” Joshua said of Breazeale. “With Wilder, what did he do him in one or two rounds? So you can see. I think Fury is a top tier fighter, and you can’t just go in there.

“Fury can’t go in there and bang out Wilder, a top tier fighter, and Wilder ain’t going to go in there and bang out Fury,” said Joshua.

AJ is sounding a little bitter here in stripping Wilder of any credit for his wins over Luis ‘King Kong’ Ortiz and Dominic Breazeale for some reason. Even though Wilder did a far better job of knocking out Breazeale than Joshua did, AJ doesn’t seem willing to acknowledge that he did a great job.

Instead of giving Wilder credit for stopping Breazeale in round 1, Joshua is devaluing his win. It Joshua 7 rounds to stop Breazeale, and he didn’t look nearly as impressive compared to Wilder. Some fans believe that the two knockout victories by Wilder over the boogeyman Ortiz stands alone as the best wins for a heavyweight in the last five years

Fury will be able to withstand Wilder’s punches this time – Joshua

“You saw the last fight [between Wilder and Fury],” said Joshua. “It took him [Wilder] 12 rounds to get a draw. So their top tier fighters, and none of them are going to do it against each other. I don’t know,” said Joshua when asked how Fury was able to get up after being knocked down by Wilder in the 12th.

“You’re used to those types of punches,” said Joshua in explaining his theory on why Fury got up in the 12th. “Wilder doesn’t punch hard enough to keep Fury down. That’s what Fury has to remember. He punches hard, yeah, but he doesn’t punch hard enough to keep him down. He put him down, but he didn’t keep him down.

“That’s in Fury’s mindset number one, and Wilder didn’t last his punches with enough authority to keep him down,” continued Joshua. “Remember, Fury came back from a long break as well, so his body may not have been conditioned to withstand the impact [from Wilder’s punches]. That’s why I think this time around he may be in a better position to get a win,” said Joshua.

AJ’s ideas about Fury being able to better withstand Wilder’s power this time around sounds like a lot of guesswork on his part. Joshua is really reaching here. The reason Fury was knocked cold by Wilder in their first fight was basically a matter of physics, and not a case of him being knocked out because he’d been inactive.

When a fighter gets hit by a fighter that generates a certain amount of G-force on their shots, they’re going to get knocked out. It doesn’t matter if they’re active or inactive leading up to that situation. On February 22, if Wilder hits Fury with a right that lands with 100% power, Tyson will likely be knocked cold again. As such, Joshua’s half-baked theory will be dust.

Joshua ready for Wilder vs. Fury 2 winner

“Whatever you want to do moving forward, just know there’s another champion that’s willing to fight,” said Joshua about his message to the Wilder vs. Fury 2 winner. “I’ve put a lot of energy into chasing that fight, and a lot of meetings.

“When they’re [Wilder or Fury] ready, we’re here. I’ve worked with a lot of people in the division, and I’d love to work with a Wilder or a Fury to get another mega fight,” said Joshua.

What Joshua is forgetting here is Wilder and Fury will be fighting a trilogy match later this year, and they’re probably not going to change their mind about that. The loser of the February 22 Wilder-Fury 2 fight has the right to trigger an immediate rematch, and you can bet they’re going to do exactly that.

Unless Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Boxing can let the Wilder vs. Fury 2 loser whet his beak on some good cold cash to step aside, they’re going to push the rematch button to make the trilogy match happen.

Joshua will get his chance in 2021 to face the Wilder vs. Fury trilogy fight after the smoke clears from their two fights this year. There’s no hurry for Joshua to fight the winner of that fight, unless he’s worried about losing again.

What Joshua should be doing is lining up a rubber match with an in shape Andy Ruiz Jr. to prove to the boxing world that he can beat the American when he’s 100% healthy.

Joshua’s December 7th win over Ruiz Jr. was tainted due to the California native coming into the fight at a whopping 283 lbs. Ruiz Jr. looked dangerously unhealthy in his obese state for that fight.

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