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Anthony Joshua: The Bigger They are the Harder They Fall

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Los Angeles, December 4th, 2019- This Saturday Anthony Joshua will walk into a boxing ring with much of the world believing he won’t win.

Not because they hate him over petty promoter loyalties, or for reasons only the most ardent of boxing Twitter trolls can relate to.

This time people just don’t believe in him.

It was a far fall from grace for the man characterized as a Greek Adonis, boxing’s model carved of marble sheered from the cliffs of Mount Olympus. Having out-boxed a skilled Joseph Parker, out-lasting an aged Wladmir Klitchko in a fight of the year contender; Joshua had time and again beaten the quality of the heavyweight division, pushing through adversity, and doing it in style.

A mega-fight with Deontay Wilder in the perpetual conversation of the boxing Twitterverse. Anthony Joshua was the man.

And then suddenly, he wasn’t.

Andy Ruiz, and all of his mid-section walked in and ruined what could have been like a drunk uncle at Thanksgiving dinner, and no matter the outcome Saturday it’ll never be what it was.

In boxing, people have short memories. A win Saturday is the first step toward regaining the position Joshua once occupied, now squarely owned by Deontay Wilder as the man to beat in the division.

A win over Ruiz can setup a third fight, forcing an end to the situation completely with a rubber match. No rivalry can truly be settled unless there’s diversity in wins and losses.

There can be no doubt in the rematch, no rumors of pre-existing sparring injuries. No amount of explaining can save a loss to Ruiz. A loss means the path forward is to rebuild.

Completely.

Losing the rematch could have a silver lining. Sanctioning bodies currently don’t include champions in their rankings, Anthony Joshua would suddenly find himself in the WBC rankings.

“I want the mandatories. Guys work their way up, work hard to get to number two, and then become a mandatory. Why would you crown someone that doesn’t have to have mandatories?” Deontay Wilder said at his media workout prior to beating Luis Ortiz on November 23rd.

Facing mandatories, whether we agree with who is picking or how they’re picked is the nature of a champion’s reign in this era of impossible politics. Vacate or fight the mandatory, the WBC has never had an issue ordering high profile fights to satiate the publics hunger in the past.

Wilder and the PBC may be more interested after a second loss with the financials swaying heavily in their favor. The scenario would be a last effort to resurrect Joshua and a necessary risk for Matchroom.

The end of the road is far off for Anthony Joshua. Clearly a win puts him back in favor of the boxing media and public, no matter the outcome.

 

About Albert Baker

Creator/Producer/Director of Under the Hand Wraps and owner of underthehandwraps.com. Albert Baker is still the Senior US Writer at InstantBoxing.com and is based in Los Angeles.

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