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Anthony Joshua likely to face Whyte-Franklin winner followed by Wilder says Eddie Hearn

Image: Anthony Joshua likely to face Whyte-Franklin winner followed by Wilder says Eddie Hearn

By Craig Daly: Promoter Eddie Hearn states that Anthony Joshua will likely be back in the ring in March against the Dillian Whyte vs. Jermaine Franklin winner, followed by a fight against Deontay Wilder.

For Wilder to get the fight against Joshua, he’ll need to win his WBC-ordered final title eliminator against former unified heavyweight champion Andy Ruiz Jr.

With that said, Hearn isn’t sure whether Joshua will go straight into the bigger match against former WBC champion Wilder (43-2-1, 42 KOs) or put that fight off until after he faces the Whyte-Franklin winner.

Joshua (24-3, 22 KOs) is looking for a new trainer. He could begin working with Roy Jones Jr. If that’s the case, it would be better for Joshua to delay the Wilder fight until after he faces the Whyte vs. Franklin winner because that would be a risky one for him to take.

A tune-up against Whyte or Franklin would be perfect for Joshua to get ready for the thunderous right hand from Wilder.

“We reached out in August to talk about a fight later this year with Dillian Whyte, and now we’re reaching out to talk about an Anthony Joshua fight,” said Eddie Hearn to DAZN Boxing Show when asked if he’s discussed with Deontay Wilder’s team about a fight with Anthony Joshua.

“Honestly, I don’t see that fight happening in February or March,” Hearn continued. “I know Wilder is supposed to be fighting Ruiz, but it also depends. AJ just wants big fights.

“We were talking to him in Abu Dhabi. I think he’s coming back in March. It’s just who he fights. He’s watching the Whyte-Franklin fight, thinking, ‘The winner of that is a good first fight for me of the year, and Deontay Wilder is the next one.’ But he may end up going straight into the Wilder fight.

“It wouldn’t surprise me. It’ll always depend on when he’s going to fight. Fighters’ dates come around pretty quickly. When the Fury fight fell through, he’s likely, ‘Okay, I’m going to have Christmas, and then I’m going to start camp and fight in February or March.’

“Then January comes around, and then, ‘Maybe I’ll just go in May or June, and I’ll go straight into Wilder.’ We have to look at the offers for that fight and the money.

“It really wouldn’t surprise me if he went straight into the Wilder fight, but I think subject to Dillian Whyte winning and Franklin and all this other stuff, I think it’s more realistic that he [Joshua] fights in March first and then goes into Wilder next,” said Hearn.

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