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Johnny Nelson on Joshua vs. Fury: AJ will knockout Tyson

Anthony Joshua, Eddie Hearn, Tyson Fury boxing photo

By Charles Brun: Johnny Nelson is picking underdog Anthony Joshua to knock out Tyson Fury when the two British heavyweights meet up in early 2021 in their long-awaited unification clash in May or June.

Nelson sees it as a situation where IBF/WBA/WBO champion Joshua (24-1, 22 KOs) will get his second wind in the championship rounds, and he’ll come on to knockout the taller fighter Fury (30-0-1, 21 KOs).

It sounds like a reasonable prediction on Nelson’s part; Joshua is the more powerful and faster of the two heavyweights. Nelson’s prediction won’t make many British fans happy, as many of them have already made up their minds that Joshua has no chance.

If you saw what Joshua did to his last opponent Kubrat Pulev in hurting him repeatedly with uppercuts, you’ve got to be giving him a shot of knocking out Fury.

Joshua has always had an excellent uppercut, but he’s improved it to the point where it’s his primary weapon, and it’s a punch that is hard to take more than once or twice.

Anthony Joshua, Eddie Hearn, Tyson Fury boxing photo

Nelson: Joshua will knockout Fury in the later rounds

“AJ has that raw power that will make Tyson Fury think about boxing him more than beating him up. But I believe Joshua will box a lot better in this fight than people expect,” said Johnny Nelson to Sky Sports.

“As Joshua gets his second wind in the later rounds, that’s when he’ll manage to land a shot on Fury and knock him out. I think AJ’s boxing ability will actually shine, more than people realize. He’ll do better when he boxes him, instead of just having a fight.

It makes sense what Nelson is saying about Joshua likely winning the fight because he’s going to get to Fury sooner or later in that match. I’m afraid I have to disagree with Nelson about his prediction of Joshua knocking out Fury in the ninth.

It’s more likely that Joshua will get to Fury’s chin early, possibly by the third, to get him out of there.

Anthony Joshua, Eddie Hearn, Tyson Fury boxing photo

The best chance Fury has if there’s another referee that is lax on maintaining the fight’s rules, as we saw in his rematch with Wilder. If Fury can brain Joshua with rabbit punches all night long as he did against poor Wilder, he’ll likely knock AJ out.

You’ve got to believe that Joshua and his promoter Eddie Hearn will be quite vocal with the referee that works the fight and lets him know ahead of time to watch for Fury’s rabbit punching.

If Fury isn’t able to tee off with his punches to the back of Joshua’s head like he did with Wilder last February, he’s got no chance of winning. Besides the rabbit shots, Fury can’t punch, and he’s too slow to defeat a talent like Joshua.

What’s interesting is how so many fans believe that Fury did a great job of outboxing the injured Wilder last February.

Fury’s boxing skills were NOT the reason he won that fight. He won because Wilder came into the match with an injured right bicep, which took away his primary weapon, and then Fury got away with throwing rabbit punches the entire fight.

Fury did not put on a great boxing display. He basically mauled Wilder the entire fight, and looked crude.

It was the same roughhouse style of fighting that Fury used to win over Otto Wallin last year. That was a fight in which Fury should have been stopped due to the terrible he suffered in the second round, but the ringside doctor didn’t step in to halt the fight.

You see fights stopped all the time with cuts that are arguably less severe than the one Fury had, and yet ye was able to go the distance without the ringside doctor halting it.

Would Fury had been able to go the distance if he wasn’t a popular fighter? Some fans would argue that Fury was allowed to go the entire fight due to his name.

If Fury suffers a severe cut against Joshua, it won’t be surprising if he’s allowed to fight without the match being halted.

Fury’s weak punch resistance gives Joshua a great chance

Most fans would agree tht Fury’s punch resistance leaves a lot to be desired, as we saw in his first fight with Deontay Wilder in 2018. That was a fight in which Fury was clinically knocked out by Wilder in the 12th round, but the referee Jack Reiss chose to give him a count.

Fury can’t take headshots well, as we’ve seen countless times. Wilder might have knocked him out in their rematch if Deontay didn’t come into the fight with an injured right bicep. Wilder’s primary weapon was out of commission for that fight.

In the Wilder-Fury fight in 2018, it’s painfully obvious that Fury was knocked out in the 12th.

Even if you ignore the controversy about the count, it struck one looking odd that Fury was even given a count considering that he was out cold at the time.

Should Dillian Whyte have been given a count when he was knocked cold by Alexander Povetkin in the fifth round last August? Fury appeared to be much more hurt than Whyte.

Despite what we saw last February in Fury’s seventh-round knockout win over Deontay Wilder, he’s not a big puncher by any stretch of the imagination.

Fury bulked up to 273 lbs for the rematch with the 231 lb Deontay, and he used his 42-lb weight advantage to bully the ‘Bronze Bomber’ in close.

During that fight, Fury got away with a boatload of rabbit punches to the back of Wilder’s head and clearly had a bearing on the outside.

In the third, Fury knocked Wilder down with a right-hand rabbit shot. From that point, Wilder was done. He was bleeding from his left ear, and his balance was gone.

Anthony Joshua, Eddie Hearn, Tyson Fury boxing photo

Eddie Hearn gives update on Joshua vs. Fury negotiations

 “We’re close. Backward and forwards with contracts at the moment. Things have been progressing really well over the last week. I really believe you will see that fight May/June, everyone’s working well in the right direction,” Hearn said to the AK and Barak Show @SiriusXMBoxing.

We don’t know if all four titles will be on the line for the Joshua vs. Fury fight in May or June. WBO mandatory challenger Oleksandr Usyk still hasn’t said if he’ll step aside yet. If not, Joshua will need to vacate his WBO title to go ahead so that his fight with Fury can go ahead.

Besides the negotiations on the purse split, Hearn still needs to decide where the Fury vs. Joshua fight will occur. British boxing fans want the fight to occur in the UK, whereas U.S fans want it to take place in the United States.

Hearn seems to be anxious about staging the fight in the Middle East or whatever country is willing to come up with the most dough to host the contest. That’s sad for the UK and American fans, who have been supporting these two heavyweights for years.

If the fight is staged behind closed doors, it helps Fury because Joshua fights a lot better when crowds cheering him on. He’s a completely different fighter when he’s being cheered. If Joshua had fought Pulev in front of a live crowd, he likely would have knocked him out in one or two rounds.

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