Eddie Hearn Makes The Official Announcement For Anthony Joshua vs. Oleksandr Usyk
It’s no secret that unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua’s (24-1, 22 KOs) next title defense would be against the former undisputed world cruiserweight champion and WBO heavyweight mandatory, Oleksandr Usyk (18-0, 13 KOs).
On June 25, 3KingsBoxing reported Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn, suggested a deal was finalized, with the match happening September 25. Despite that tease, there was no formal announcement.
Here are the latest developments. During an exclusive interview with iFL TV, the Chairman of Matchroom Boxing made the official declaration. He also provided details on what venue would host the fight.
“Finally, Anthony Joshua will fight Oleksandr Usyk for the WBA, WBO and IBF world heavyweight titles at your favorite club, Tottenham Hotspur Football Club, on September 25th.”
Many were looking forward to a unification showdown between “AJ” and WBC world champ Tyson Fury on August 14. However, in May of 2021, arbitrator Daniel Weinstein ruled that Fury must next face Deontay Wilder in a trilogy. Now, Joshua defends the unified titles against Usyk, who is the WBO mandatory heavyweight contender.
A LEGIT THREAT
Usyk is a legit threat. His accomplishments in the ring are unquestioned. It can be argued the 34 year-old from Shypyntsi, Ukraine, is the most skilled fighter in the division. As a result, he is ranked sixth in the 3KingsBoxing Top Ten fighter rankings.
Even Hearn acknowledges his charge faces a difficult task. However, he feels Joshua’s resume is arguably better than any heavyweight in the world. It includes former world champions Wladimir Klitschko, Joseph Parker, and Andy Ruiz. He believes the tough competition will serve him well against Usyk.
“AJ is a throwback fighter. He wants to fight the very, very best. He wants to improve as a fighter, he’s always improving. This is a tremendous fight, one of the toughest fights in the heavyweight division.
“It’s a fascinating fight. It’s going to do huge numbers, and I believe ‘AJ’ is the best heavyweight in the world”.
Some critics give Usyk more than a good chance of winning. If the champ is not on his A-game, he will be in for a long night. While this is not the fight many fans wanted to see, this is a more than good consolation prize. Don’t sleep on this bout!
By: Michael Wilson Jr.