For the first time in a long time, there is real buzz in the heavyweight division. Boxing’s big men are making headlines, just like in the last 90’s when fighters like Mike Tyson, Lennox Lewis, Riddick Bowe, and Evander Holyfield ruled the division.
In the here and now, it’s the Anthony Joshua-Deontay Wilder rivalry that is making sportswriters jump at their keyboards. And, although online betting sites such as BestOnlineSportsbooks.info will likely feature Joshua as a big favorite, the public perception appears to be that he is the one running away from this seemingly logical clash of giants.
With both fighters coming off of decisive victories, WBC champ Wilder has been calling on IBF/WBA champ Joshua but Joshua has mostly been non-committal. This leads some to believe that the big Brit, Joshua, is the one avoiding the match-up.
Chief among those who believe that is the American Wilder, himself.
“He’s not trying to make this fight happen. I’m trying to make it happen ASAP,” Wilder recently told media.“He says he needs more time, maybe 2018, maybe ’19, maybe ’20, so that he can put himself in a better position to beat me…
“‘Scared’ is too strong; we’ve seen guys get in the ring many times, so they can’t be scared. But I think Joshua is very fearful of fighting me. Being fearful is a different term to being scared. I think he fears me. I don’t think Joshua really wants to fight me, because he know that I am who I say I am.”
Meanwhile, Joshua has not exactly been a shrinking violet when it comes to his desire to hit and hurt Wilder in the squared circle. It’s just that neither he nor his team have made any steps forward when it comes to actually getting in the ring with Wilder any time soon.
The closest Joshua and his promoter, Eddie Hearn, have come is to offer Wilder a bout with promotional stablemate Dillian Whyte in a UK showcase– an offer that Wilder immediately and aggressively dismissed as something beneath him as WBC champ and current longest reigning heavyweight titlist.
Joshua vs. Wilder is just too big NOT to happen. This battle of giants will happen, unless someone comes along and dethrones either (or both). The worry is that someone or something WILL come along to ruin a possible mega-fight and the biggest heavyweight title bout since Lewis vs. Tyson.
One can’t help but feel a sense of urgency when talking about putting this bout together. For the sake of boxing in general (and the heavyweight division, specifically), the two giants must do battle. And it needs to be sooner rather than later.