Anthony Joshua insists he has no fear of Deontay Wilder’s power and would be gunning for an early knockout if the two ever met in the ring.
Joshua 23-1 (21) regained the IBF, WBA and WBO heavyweight championships with a masterful display of boxing to outpoint Andy Ruiz Jr 33-2 (22) in their rematch in Saudi Arabia in December.
WBC champion Wilder 42-0-1 (41) made the 10th defence of his title with a seventh-round knockout of Luis Ortiz 31-2 (26) in Las Vegas in November and is preparing for his rematch with Tyson Fury 29-0-1 (20) in the same city in February.
Joshua said he would apply a far more aggressive approach than Ortiz did against Wilder.
“He wouldn’t be there to do that in the seventh round. I would go in to knock him out. It’s heavyweight against heavyweight, champion against champion,” Joshua said to Sky Sports.
“This is a serious fight, so I ain’t going to go in there to try and outbox him for 12 rounds, because of his punching power as well. I’ve got to go in there and take him out. Don’t let him get too comfortable in the ring with me.”
Earlier last year Wilder blasted out Dominic Breazeale in under a round, but Joshua says he has the style to diffuse the American’s vaunted power.
“Nah, not scary, but I know it’s there,” said Joshua.
“There are certain punches. Some are like concussive, some are stinging and some are like punches where they knock you out with one punch and you’re out for the count.
“Wilder possesses that kind of power. It’s about eliminating that power and just studying how to deal with it really.”
Joshua was ordered to make mandatory title defences against Kubrat Pulev and Oleksandr Usyk next by the IBF and WBO respectively and is currently negotiations to find a solution that will see him retain all three of his belts.
Wilder has repeatedly called for “one champion, one face, one name” and Joshua says would happily take the fight.
“We’ve done it, we’ve unified it, in the space of 20 odd fights. He’s had 40 odd fights. How come he hasn’t managed to unify the division yet?” Joshua said.
“If he’s looking for it, we’re the ones to do it with, and we’re not hard to find. We’ve got a great team behind us, so reach out.
“Even though there are two at the minute, I’ll let the people decide who they think is the real heavyweight champion right now.
“I always say, we’re in the same division, the same era, that fight has to happen.
“We just put on an amazing event. We’re going to do another amazing event god willing in the new year. He can come and be part of history. We’re trying to achieve big things in boxing and to add Wilder to my list would be an honour.”
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