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Anthony Joshua vs Deontay Wilder or Tyson Fury desired by the ‘whole world’, says Eddie Hearn

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Anthony Joshua, Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder

“Everyone is going to want to see the undisputed fight, the winner against AJ”

Anthony Joshua and the winner of Deontay Wilder vs Tyson Fury will face “so much pressure” to agree a fight that would crown the division’s king, according to promoter Eddie Hearn.

Wilder defends his WBC heavyweight title against Fury in a rematch on February 22 and Joshua is “close” to agreeing a defence of his IBF, WBA and WBO belts against Kubrat Pulev.

“I just think that whoever wins [Wilder vs Fury 2] and if AJ beats Pulev, which we hope he does, basically the whole world is going to say ‘we have to see that fight,'” said Joshua’s promoter Hearn.

“I think there will be so much pressure on both guys to make that fight.

Fury and Wilder

“Unless Wilder-Fury 2 is a brilliant fight, no one is going to want to see the [third fight]. Everyone is going to want to see the undisputed fight, the winner against AJ.

“I’m hoping that we can manoeuvre something there. If not, we fight Oleksandr Usyk, if he beats Derek Chisora, and if Joshua beats Pulev.”

Pulev (IBF) and Usyk (WBO) are the mandatory challengers to Joshua, and Wilder and Fury have pencilled in a third fight.

Fury and wilder rematch

But Joshua is hoping to scupper those plans by agreeing an undisputed heavyweight championship fight for later in 2020.

Joshua told Sky Sports earlier this month: “We had a meeting about that. It has great potential. I heard [Wilder and Fury] have a third fight lined up towards the end of the year but we have to throw a curveball in there.

“Something that gets Wilder’s attention providing he wins so that he thinks to himself: ‘Even though I have a rematch clause, I’ll see how I can manipulate my contract, get out of it, and fight for the undisputed championship’.”

Anthony Joshua defeat Andy Ruiz

A “huge site offer” has been made by Saudi Arabia to host the undisputed title fight, if it is agreed, according to Hearn.

But Joshua’s next fight against Pulev will “almost certainly” be a UK homecoming in late May or early June with the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, the Emirates Stadium, the Principality Stadium and Twickenham in the running to host.

Former undisputed cruiserweight champion Usyk, who made a successful heavyweight transition last year, is expected to face Chisora in the meantime.

“We’re nearly there, it’s a brilliant fight,” Hearn said.

Ukraine’s undefeated Usyk claimed he was ready to immediately face Joshua last year but is behind Pulev in the queue of challengers and would be risking his shot at the belts by first taking on Chisora in late March or early April.

“We know Usyk is a genius but he’s stepping up to the big boys, and Chisora is on a great run of form,” Hearn said.

“Chisora has just pole-axed Artur Szpilka in his last fight. He’ll be winging them into Usyk.

“Usyk will out-box him, his feet will be much too good for Chisora. But Chisora can lean on him, sweat on him, sink those big haymakers over the top, work him on the inside.

“Fingers crossed, an announcement on Usyk vs Chisora coming soon.”

Usyk

Dillian Whyte, meanwhile, is in talks to face either Alexander Povetkin or Andy Ruiz Jr next.

“Whyte has got the best resume of a guy who has never fought for a world title by a country mile,” Hearn said. “We want to make sure he gets that shot.

“I think it will probably be Povektin next for Whyte and I think it could be Ruiz straight after that.


Joseph Parker Doesn’t Believe Joshua Will Have Any Problems vs Pulev

Anthony Joshua

Anthony Joshua gained revenge over Andy Ruiz in December when he completely out boxed an out of shape Andy Ruiz over 12 rounds in Saudi Arabia. Besides gaining revenge he also recaptured his WBA, WBO, IBF and IBO heavyweight titles.

After being shockingly stopped by Ruiz in June, Joshua completely changed up his style and boxed from the outside for most of the fight in the rematch.

Ruiz was 15 pounds heavier in the rematch and after the fight admitted to partying too much and not training the way that he should have.

Anthony Joshua and Eddie Hearn

Former heavyweight champion Joseph Parker, who holds a win over Ruiz and a unanimous decision loss to Joshua, was impressed with the adjustments that Joshua made.

“The way that Joshua fought – he didn’t put himself there to be caught. He just moved the whole time and picked his shots, a more clinical performance instead of a coming in and trying to finish you off performance. It was good. Then Ruiz came in a bit heavy but he will bounce back. Not a lot of people want to fight him,” Parker told BoxingScene.com.

Joshua’s team is currently in talks to face IBF mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev with May or June being targeted for the fight.

Anthony Joshua

Pulev has reeled off 8 victories in a row since suffering his only professional loss to Wladimir Klitschko in 2014. Even with that win streak Parker doesn’t believe that Pulev will pose much of a threat to Joshua.

“I don’t think that is a problem for Joshua. Pulev is coming off a good win but the way Joshua performed and his size and reach – Pulev is a good fighter but I definitely lean towards Joshua in that fight,” said Parker.


Hearn: The World Will Want Joshua vs. Wilder-Fury Winner

Anthony Joshua & Eddie Hearn

Eddie Hearn, promoter for IBF, WBA, WBO, IBO heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua, expects a massive demand to see his boxer face the winner of the upcoming rematch between WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder and challenger Tyson Fury.

Wilder will face Fury for a second time n February 22 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.

Joshua will be making a mandatory defense of his titles against Kubrat Pulev in May or June.

Anthony Joshua

There is a contractual clause, where Wilder or Fury could demand an immediate trilogy fight. In other words, the trilogy can be initiated by either boxer regardless of the outcome.

But unless the rematch is a classic, Hearn does not expect a third fight to come off. The first bout ended in a controversial twelve round split draw in December 2018 at Staples Center in Los Angeles. Experts are split on the outcome of the second bout, but there is a slight edge to Wilder.

If the Wilder-Fury trilogy comes off next, then Hearn would match Joshua against his WBO mandatory challenger, Oleksandr Usyk – provided the former unified cruiserweight champ wins a planned match against heavyweight banger Derek Chisora in March.

Anthony Joshua dialogue

“I just think that whoever wins [Wilder vs Fury 2] and if AJ beats Pulev, which we hope he does, basically the whole world is going to say ‘we have to see that fight,'” said Hearn.

“I think there will be so much pressure on both guys to make that fight. Unless Wilder-Fury 2 is a brilliant fight, no one is going to want to see the [third fight]. Everyone is going to want to see the undisputed fight, the winner against AJ. I’m hoping that we can manoeuvre something there. If not, we fight Oleksandr Usyk, if he beats Derek Chisora, and if Joshua beats Pulev.”

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