By: Hans Themistode
Whenever a fighter has yet to taste defeat inside of the ring, it can become difficult to get him or her to take on a real challenge. That 0 in the loss column is just too important to place in harm’s way. Unless, of course, if the price is right then that’s a completely different story.
Other than a ridiculous payday, the risk never seems to outweigh the reward.
In the case of undefeated Heavyweight contenders Daniel Dubois (14-0, 13 KOs) and Joe Joyce (10-0, 9 KOs), they’ve both decided that they are ready to put everything on the line at such an early stage in their careers.
On paper, this contest seems like an evenly matched one. It seems like the right call, after all, they are a couple of heavy hitters and for the most part, are viewed as the brightest young stars in the division. With both men knocking out all but one of their opponents, it’s safe to say that the judges are going to have a night off when they clash at the O2 Arena, in London.
As is often the case in boxing, there’s a storyline behind everything. For Dubois, he’s already faced off against Joyce. Well, in sparring that is.
Back in 2016, Joyce was gearing up for the Olympic games. Dubois was one of many sparring partners who was brought in to give Joyce some work. The results of that sparring session weren’t exactly competitive to say the least.
With that being said however, it was several years ago and many things have changed since then.
“I’m a different animal now,” said Dubois during a recent press conference. “You are going to become an old man that night. When I look at you I see a massive target and I am going to let loose. This is my era of boxing and I will dominate after this. All his fans will become my fans. You are getting destroyed. This is a new chapter, this is the next step in my career.”
You would think that since these two have a bit of history together, that there would be some sort of friendly atmosphere between them. Think again. Not only did the two go back and forth, but Dubois made sure to say how he felt the night will end.
“I don’t feel it is going to go the distance, he is going to be taken out in devastating style.”
For a fighter with only 14 professional fights under his belt, Dubois talks a good game. Yet, when juxtaposed with his opponent Joe Joyce, he actually has the edge in terms of the number of fights. But that doesn’t entirely tell the whole story. Joyce is already 34 years of age, with a Silver medal dangling around his neck. He also has two notable wins already. One came in the form of one-time title challenger Bryant Jennings and the other against former Heavyweight titlist Bermane Stiverne.
Both Stiverne and Jennings aren’t exactly in their respective primes anymore but hey, the names on his resume are impressive. Dubois on the other hand, has no one even remotely close to the opposition that Joyce has found himself in the ring against.
“Nathan Gorman is you’re only credible win,” said Joyce. “I rate him, you’re on the way up, but maybe you are not ready for me. You are a good fighter, you have great potential, but you are going to unravel in this fight.”
At this point, it’s difficult to say who has the edge going into this one. Each Heavyweight can make a rock solid case for themselves as to why they are going to win this upcoming contest. But no one wants to hear a debate between these two. The fans simply want to see them end the discussion in the ring. Thankfully, that’s exactly what will happen on April 11th.