If Anthony Joshua tops Joseph Parker, Deontay Wilder ‘probably’ next, Hearn says
LOS ANGELES — Eddie Hearn has maintained that Anthony Joshua would likely make his U.S. debut in August, possibly against Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller in Brooklyn, provided the unified heavyweight titleholder adds a third belt at the end of the month as expected.
Joshua is set to fight Joseph Parker on March 31, and the Brit is heavily favored to turn back the challenge of the WBO titleholder.
Following Deontay Wilder’s thrilling come-from-behind stoppage of Luis Ortiz on Saturday, plans might have changed.
Hearn, Joshua’s longtime promoter, told reporters Thursday that if Joshua beats Parker, then the Wilder fight is “probably” next.
“I think there’ll be too much pressure for that fight, not just from the fans but from Anthony Joshua,” said Hearn, who’s in Southern California to promote Scott Quigg’s title defense of Oscar Valdez on Saturday. “People don’t know him like I know him. … The Wilder fight, he wants that fight. He sees Wilder as a very straightforward fight, so there’s no fear.”
A meeting between THE RING’s top two heavyweights would not only crown boxing’s first undisputed heavyweight champion since Mike Tyson in the 1980s, but also its first ever undisputed ruler in the four-title era.
The super fight would also be contested for THE RING’s vacant heavyweight championship after Tyson Fury was stripped, and it’s a bout both Joshua (20-0, 20 knockouts) and Wilder want badly.
Wilder (40-0, 39 KOs) has been lobbying for the fight hard, and after he rallied stop Ortiz in Round 10, he called out the Brit again.
Now, hopefully, there will be no more marinating, should Parker take care of business, only the biggest fight the sport can deliver this fall.
“The Wilder fight is the one,” Hearn said. “It’s the biggest fight in world boxing. If we can’t make the Wilder fight, then Anthony Joshua should fight in America next.
“The options are that we go in August in American against someone and then Deontay Wilder or straight into Wilder. But if we do Wilder it will probably be October, November, December.”
And if it’s someone other than Wilder, “Big Baby” could get the call. But one thing is clear: that’s not the plan at this time. It’s time for Joshua-Wilder.
Mike Coppinger is the Senior Writer for RingTV.com. Follow him on Twitter: @MikeCoppinger