Eddie Hearn believes Anthony Joshua could have gotten stopped earlier if not for the bell!
Eddie Hearn’s most profitable fighter was stunned in a monumental upset on June 1. Most promoters would have instantly went into defense mode, making excuses for their asset. However and surprisingly, that’s not what we’ve seen from the Hearn.
Joshua was knocked down four times in the fight. He went down twice in the 3rd, and twice in the 7th. After Joshua beat the count on the last knockdown, he looked completely dejected. This would signal referee Michael Griffin to call the fight off.
Seconds earlier, Griffin had asked Joshua if he wanted to continue. While Joshua replied “yes”, his promoter believes he replied instinctively and that he really had nothing left. I can’t say I disagree. The former champion looked like a beaten man.
The Matchroom head honcho acknowledged how easy it could’ve been for him to berate the referee and cry early stoppage. However, he saw what most fans saw. Joshua was already beaten. In fact, Hearn even admitted that had time not run out in round three after the second knockdown, Ruiz likely would’ve gotten his fighter out of there earlier.
These are all very candid statements for Hearn, who has taken criticisms over the last few years as being overprotective of Joshua. It could also be the case that Hearn realizes that the truth will be far more beneficial for his fighter in the long run, as opposed to if he were to spin the story just to ease the sting of defeat.
At this point, I think everyone on Joshua’s team realize that they need to re-evaluate and adjust. Looking at what went wrong, from an honest perspective, is the first step to that!
By: Tanner Gill