Former WBO heavyweight champion Joseph Parker 24-1 (18) plans to get back in the ring as soon as possible after losing his world title to unified champion Anthony Joshua 21-0 (20) in Wales last month.
And promoter David Higgins of Duco Events thinks he has just the opponent in mind for the softly-spoken Kiwi, but it will require another trip back to Old Blighty.
WBC leading contender Dillian Whyte.
“He has repeatedly called out Joe for a long time,” Higgins told the Sunday edition of the New Zealand Herald on the weekend. “Given he is waiting for another shot at AJ, which may take a long time to come, we are ready, willing and available to fight him – we’re saying put your money where your mouth is.
“We’re not calling him out, we’re just saying Joe is keen to fight him. Joe’s reputation and profile in the UK have increased significantly following the Joshua fight and a fight between Joe and Whyte would easily sell out the O2 Arena, so it would make financial sense for Whyte to take this fight, too.”
The 30-year-old Whyte 23-1 (17) was last in action a week before Parker lost his world title belt to Joshua at Principality Stadium in Cardiff when he defeated another Antipodean in Australia’s Lucas Browne 25-1 (22) at London’s O2 Arena.
A fight between Brixton’s “Body Snatcher” and the 26-year-old Kiwi would be a natural fit with both heavyweight front of mind with British fight fans after their recent high profile bouts.
Whyte is the mandatory contender for American Deontay Wilder’s WBC championship but with that fight unlikely to happen any time soon, Parker might be in with a shot.
But the former WBO champion won’t be the only potential opponent being considered by Whyte’s team. Hearn has already suggested matching him with 36-year-old Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev 25-1 (13), the IBF number two contender to Whyte’s number four ranking, after Alexander Povetkin 34-1 (24), the WBO and WBA number one contender, indicated he would prefer to wait out his shot at unified champion Anthony Joshua than face Whyte. The 38-year-old Russian scored a savage one-punch fifth round knockout over Liverpool’s David Price 22-5 (18) on the undercard of the Joshua versus Parker fight but not before being rocked himself at the end of the third round.
Whyte became hot property in the heavyweight division with his sixth-round one-punch knockout of the capable former WBA “regular” champion Browne.
Parker is currently ranked number four by the reputable The Ring magazine, while Whyte sits two places back at sixth. Boxrec.com also has Whyte at six with Parker at number seven.