Weigh-in alert: Anthony Joshua 240.8 Kubrat Pulev 239.7
The pre-fight pageantry is over.
Reigning IBF, WBA and WBO heavyweight titleholder Anthony Joshua and challenger Kubrat Pulev have weighed in ahead of Saturday’s clash at the Wembley Arena in London.
There were no surprises, with Joshua coming in at 240.8 pounds, just three pounds heavier than for his most recent outing, the rematch triumph over Andy Ruiz, last December. The former Olympic champion looked habitually spectacular on the scales, and there were some lively verbal exchanges during the face-off.
“I’ve seen so many fighters talk a load of rubbish, then they get smacked up,” Joshua (23-1, 21 knockouts) told Sky Sports in the U.K. “I would have just clapped him on his jaw there and then but I’ve got to do it tomorrow.
“I know what he’s like, I’ve studied him, he thinks he’s a warrior, but I said, ‘Don’t let the guys you’ve fought [previously] gas you up. You’re in against a real one now.’ When people come in the ring with me, they’re confident, then after a few rounds their soul gets destroyed. Once I see that, I take them out.”
Pulev (28-1, 14 KOs) has won eight fights in a row since suffering his only loss to then-champion Wladimir Klitschko in November 2014. The seasoned Bulgarian, who was also a decorated amateur, came in at 239.7 pounds, a touch lighter than the norm.
Joshua is rated No. 1 by The Ring at heavyweight, behind champion Tyson Fury, and Pulev is rated No. 10.
Joshua-Pulev, plus undercard action, will be broadcast by DAZN in the U.S. and will be available on Sky Box Office pay-per-view in the U.K.
Tom Gray is Associate Editor for Ring Magazine. Follow him on Twitter: @Tom_Gray_Boxing