Joshua to Face Pulev in October

By Marc Livitz on September 5, 2017
Joshua to Face Pulev in October
“We will stand and fight. His style fits mine perfectly and in boxing, styles make fights.”

The news may be seen as neither hot nor fresh because Joshua will face the mandatory challenger for his IBF title, Kubrat Pulev on October 28…

Since taking part in one of the most fascinating, enthralling heavyweight championship clashes in recent years, Anthony Joshua’s next opponent has been one of wide speculation. The unbeaten champion from Hertfordshire, U.K. knocked out longtime heavyweight kingpin Wladimir Klitschko in April and the boxing hemisphere has been rife with opinions galore in terms of just who he should face next. There are a few names which seem to instantly surface, such as the undefeated knockout artist from Alabama, Deontay Wilder, who holds the WBC title among the giants and trees of the division. Of course, there’s also the WBO champion, Joseph Parker (23-0, 18 KO’s), who like Joshua (19-0, 19 KO’s) and Wilder (38-0, 37 KO’s) has yet to experience defeat in his professional career.

The news is in, although it may be seen as neither hot nor fresh because Joshua will face the mandatory challenger for his IBF title, Kubrat Pulev on October 28 at Millennium (Principality) Stadium in Cardiff, Wales. Either Joshua’s handlers are trying to let the 27-year-old former gold medalist’s career marinate or are now of the opinion that his name alone can sell out a football stadium. While Pulev (25-1, 13 KO’s) could be considered a game challenger to Joshua, he may not be at the top of the list for more than a few fans of the sport.

It may not matter, especially if Anthony is able to pack Millennium Stadium to the tune of close to 75,000 fans. Various publications reported 90,000 were in attendance last April at Wembley Stadium when he faced Wladimir Klitschko. Ultimately, boxing can have its own jagged edge when it comes to scheduling the best contests. It doesn’t always matter what the fans want or even if with respect to logic, if a competitive match is ultimately made. In this case, Pulev is the mandatory challenger for Joshua’s IBF belt.

It can often be the norm that a promoter doesn’t look too much into a crystal ball of what “might” work if a profitable formula has already been established. How many times have we wanted to see one of our favorite musical groups from yesteryear but such a desire is but a dream? The demand just isn’t there anymore and so, there’s no sold out arenas. Instead, there’s clubs and dive bars. This is not to suggest that Anthony Joshua is going to wind up as a club fighter, but the window of opportunity in combat sports is extremely short for most of its participants, so hopefully a more titanic showdown is on the horizon.

According to Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Sports, the summer of 2018 will be the time for Joshua to face Deontay Wilder after meeting his mandatory IBF challenger in Pulev and subsequently the next in line for his WBA belt, Luis Ortiz.

“I have been eager to get back in the ring since Wembley,” said Joshua.

“I’ll be locked away focusing on fight number 20 for the next eight weeks. I am excited to experience the atmosphere in a sold out Principality Stadium and aim to give the fans a spectacular night.”

Pulev, 36, is a native of Bulgaria and has won his last five bouts since being knocked out by Wladimir Klitschko in November of 2014. “Anthony is a formidable opponent,” he said.

“We will not hug and hold. We will not run. We will stand and fight. His style fits mine perfectly and in boxing, styles make fights. My preparation will be very intense and I will be perfectly ready when I enter the ring so that he will have no chance to beat me.”

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  1. Kokopelli 01:24pm, 09/05/2017

    If Wilder, on those stilts that he calls legs can withstand Joshua’s bull rushes, unlike Wlad who couldn’t, he will KO this guy!

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