Who Should Anthony Joshua Fight Next?

November 15, 2023
5 months

In today’s boxing news, Anthony Joshua is no longer the force that he once used to be as the former unified heavyweight champion aims to get back to the top of the heavyweight division.

Following his consecutive losses to Oleksandr Usyk, the Brit hired Derrick James as his trainer as wins over Jermaine Franklin and Robert Helenius followed.

However, the Brit is still some way away from challenging for another world title as Usyk and Tyson Fury appear on course to face each other for undisputed in 2024. With that being said, here are some names that AJ could fight next.

Deontay Wilder

A fight with the Bronze Bomber has long been talked about, however, Skills Challenge Entertainment were unable to deliver the fight in Saudi Arabia. While that may have been the case, the fight would still generate lots of interest.

The pair had first been linked with a fight in 2018 for the right to be undisputed. However, a deal could not be agreed as both boxers would lose their belts.

However, a win for Joshua over Wilder may rekindle the hopes for a Tyson Fury fight after the latter’s performance against Francis Ngannou showed that Joshua could have a shot at winning based on that performance.

Andy Ruiz Jr.

A third fight with Andy Ruiz Jr. would certainly pacify the boxing fanbase given the history between the pair. On his American debut, Joshua was stopped by the Mexican in a major upset.

While AJ did manage to get his revenge in the rematch, there was a perception that Joshua’s style was never the same following that defeat.

A focus on boxing and moving, as opposed to being the power puncher that he was known for, became more visible as questions emerged over AJ’s mentality.

Joe Joyce

A big domestic clash against Joe Joyce would certainly fit the bill. Despite Joyce losing two fights to Zhilei Zhang, both Joyce and AJ are in a rebuilding phase of their career.

Prior to Joyce’s defeat, he was being considered as a serious threat to the heavyweight division. But given that there are serious question marks over his punch resistance, the fight could be tailor-made for AJ.

The Brit is currently working his new style under James, which is why having a slow and come-forward fighter may suit Joshua.

Filip Hrgovic

A fight against  Filip Hrgovic would make sense from a practical point of view in that the Croatian is the current IBF mandatory.

That puts the boxer in line to face the winner of Fury vs. Usyk. But given that Hrgovic is currently under Matchroom Boxing, making a fight with Joshua later down the line would be a lot easier.

And a win against Hrgovic would boost Joshua’s rankings moving forward and put him one step closer to regaining that coveted world title.

Ultimately, Joshua is entering into the latter parts of his career which is why the next steps are crucial. But whether he can reclaim another world title is anyone’s guess.

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