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Joshua’s only chance of beating Usyk: Knock him out – says Frank Warren

Alexander Usyk Anthony Joshua

By Barry Holbrook: Anthony Joshua will need a knockout to defeat Oleksandr Usyk in the rematch if AJ chooses to go that route says promoter Frank Warren.

Joshua WON’T outbox Usyk (19-0, 13 KOs), and it would be a mistake for him to try because he failed to show that could match the Ukrainian in that department.

Usyk took AJ to school last Saturday night, beating him by a 12 round unanimous decision to take his IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight titles from him at the Tottenham Hotspurs Stadium in London, England.

Joshua looked like a giant battery, losing energy with each passing round, and not even attempting to impose his size on the smaller fighter.

Now that Usyk has Joshua’s three titles, he and his promotional team need to decide whether they want to rematch the new champion. Joshua (24-2, 22 KOs) has a rematch clause if he wants to use it to force Usyk to fight him again.

Not surprisingly, Usyk says he wants to fight Joshua again, albeit in Kyiv, Ukraine, not England.

Joshua needs a knockout of Usyk

“No, not unless he can land a bomb on him,” said Frank Warren to iFL TV when asked if he gives Anthony Joshua any chance of beating Oleksandr Usyk in the rematch.

Alexander Usyk Anthony Joshua

“He can’t outbox him. It’s impossible for him to outbox him. So what is he going to have to do? He’s [Joshua] going to have to stop him.

It’s a bit like Deontay Wilder. There’s no way, Deontay Wilder, in my opinion, and hopefully, I’m not wrong, can outbox Tyson Fury. I don’t see him doing that. But he’s dangerous and he can bang.

“It’s the same situation for AJ. He has that rematch [with Usyk]. He’s never outboxing him, and he’ll be more comfortable at heavyweight by then, he’ll be much more comfortable,” said Warren.

It’s going to be difficult for Joshua to score a knockout of Usyk because his defense is too good. We saw Joshua missing with some of his best power shots and getting countered by Usyk last Saturday.

If Usyk wasn’t so hard to hit, Joshua would have loaded up on every shot like he normally does. Joshua didn’t want to get countered by the former undisputed cruiserweight champion Usyk, so he played it safe.

AJ made no adjustments

“He [Joshua] didn’t do anything different from the first round to the last round. Nothing different,” said Warren.

“Yeah,” said Warren when asked if he was surprised Joshua didn’t try and use his size to attack Usyk.

“That’s the tactics I would advise. Go out and impose yourself on him. Let him think he’s going to have 12 if he survives them. If you can catch him right, if he can survive the bombs,” said Warren.

Joshua could have gone for the knockout, which is what he should have done. Again, Joshua was afraid of getting hit with a counter shot from Usyk and winding up on the canvas.

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