By: Hans Themistode
After a one sided beating which resulted in him losing his Heavyweight titles in his first contest against Andy Ruiz Jr back on June 1st, at Madison Square Garden, in New York City, Anthony Joshua got his revenge in Saudi Arabia. He easily out boxed Ruiz in their immediate rematch and now has his sights set on the future.
Joshua’s performance has received a mixed bag of both criticism and praise. Amongst those who were critical of his performance is WBC titlist Deontay Wilder.
The aforementioned Wilder gave Joshua credit for managing to pick up the win, but was far from impressed.
“He ran around the ring and was on his bike all day,” said Wilder. “Joshua’s mentality was to survive.”
Joshua’s new technique of jabbing and holding all night clearly rubbed Wilder the wrong way. Since those comments, Joshua has gotten the chance to place his celebrations on hold and respond.
“A lot of people just don’t have a good bone in their body to say something positive anyways,” said Joshua. “I just out boxed the Heavyweight champion of the world for 12 rounds. I don’t think I lost a round. Maybe one. I came in there with a great game plan. I’m successful. Isn’t that enough? You can’t box to keep everyone happy you have to box for the win. And I feel like when I’m at home celebrating, he’s there talking about negativity. Negative energy breeds failure so I’m just going to keep a positive mindset and build on that victory.”
With the WBA, IBO, IBF, and WBO titles back with Joshua, he has a seemingly endless list of opponents for his next contest.
A rematch with Ruiz is certainly on the table. So is a contest against former title challenger Kubrat Pulev and former undisputed Cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Usyk as they both hold mandatory positions with the IBF and WBO sanctioning bodies.
Although a contest against Wilder or even his fellow British rival and Lineal champion Tyson Fury is one that fights fans would enjoy to watch, it doesn’t seem likely that it will take place anytime soon.
Both Wilder and Fury are scheduled to face one another in February of 2020 to put their own rivalry to bed. Joshua may not be in line to take them on, but make no mistake about it, he would certainly love to get a crack at both of them.
“With or without Wilder we are still going to break records, but if Wilder really wants to put his name down in the history books then I think he should come see me. I would love the opportunity to either beat Deontay Wilder or beat Tyson Fury.”