By Jim Calfa: #1 WBO Joe Joyce and #2 Joseph Parker will be fighting in July for the top spot to lock themselves in as the mandatory for the winner of the Anthony Joshua vs. Oleksander Usyk rematch.
Parker is coming off an excellent 12-round unanimous decision over British journeyman Derek Chisora in their rematch last December. Joseph fought much better the second time around than in his timid performance in their first fight last May.
The 2016 Olympic silver medalist Joyce (13-0, 12 KOs) and former WBO heavyweight champion Parker (30-2, 21 KOs) revealed the news last Saturday night during the Tyson Fury vs. Dillian Whyte card at Wembley Stadium in London.
Negotiations are still ongoing for the Joyce-Parker fight, but they’re confident the match will get made for July.
Parker, 30, has won his last six fights since losing consecutive contests to Joshua and Whyte in 2018.
Surprisingly, it’s taken Parker so long to get back in position to fight for another world title potentially. Still, a big reason for that is the low-level opposition he’s been fighting.
Parker’s promoters have consistently matched him against sub-level opposition in the last four years rather than having him face talented fighters. For that reason, it’s taken him longer to get a title shot.
If you’re matched against exclusively subpar fighters in boxing, as Parker has, it delays your moving to the top.
Parker’s last six fights:
- Derek Chisora x 2
- Junior Fa
- Shawndell Terrell Winters
- Alex Leapai
- Alexander Flores
Those are poor fighters, so Parker is still waiting for a world title shot. Interestingly, Parker’s management has chosen to slowly bring him back against these guys instead of moving him fast by matching him against these highly ranked contenders:
Andy Ruiz Jr
“I’ll be out in July; it’s going to be one hell of a fight,” said Joe Joyce to iFL TV about his fight against Joseph Parker.
“It’s all fun & games now, but once we get in the ring, that’s when the serious stuff happens,” Joyce said in reacting to being told that Parker said he wants to ‘smash his head in.’
“It’s been brewing for a while now. We’re nearly done to agreeing to the fight,” said Parker to BT Sport Boxing. “We’re so close. We just need our friend to sign the contract, and then we’re on. I would love to fight Joe Joyce. I’ve always wanted to fight him, and he wants to fight me. We should be fighting tonight.
“Yes, July. I’m quite sure we’ll get it over the line, and it’s probably going to be in another stadium,” said promoter Frank Warren. “This is going to be something special.”
At this point, you’d have to favor Joyce to beat Parker because he’s got the high-pressure style to win.
Joyce’s recent wins:
- Carlos Takam
- Daniel Dubois
- Michael Wallisch
- Bryant Jennings
- Alexander Ustinov