Anthony Joshua vs Wladimir Klitschko - Future of Heavyweight Boxing
For those that might not have heard, we’re set to have one of the biggest fights in recent memory this Saturday (April 29) when the young up start Anthony Joshua (18-0, 18 KOs) takes on Wladimir Kltischko (64-4, 53 KOs), the man who ran the heavyweight division for well over a decade alongside his brother Vitali and firmly established himself as a top ten all time heavyweight. This fight will be at Wembley Stadium and will have a hot crowd of 90,000 fans in attendance. Crazy part is the fight could have easily cleared 100,000 people but they chose not to open up more seating.
The fight will be featured in the U.S. on Showtime at 4:15pm ET.
A little about Joshua:
The 25 year old Anthony Joshua is a breakout star at home in the U.K., leading the way for the current explosion in popular that boxing is experiencing in the U.K. at the moment. Unlike most other big time boxers, Joshua didn’t lace up his first pair of gloves til he was 18 years old, roughly 10 years ago. From there, he managed to win an Olympic gold medal at home at the 2012 Olympic Games in London cementing himself as a name to watch on the pro scene. And he’s torched through the division since then. He’s won all 18 of his fights via KO en route to winning the IBF heavyweight title against admittedly middling competition, even by heavyweight standards.
A little about
The 41 year old Klitschko is one of the top ten heavyweights of all time and I won’t hear any slander against him. Holding an undefeated streak that lasted him through 11 years, he held the top spot at heavyweight alongside his brother Vitali with very little difficulty/derision using his size and power to topple all opposition. That all came to an end for the Ukrainian giant in 2015 when the unsong Tyson Fury came through and won a one-sided boxing clinic against Wlad. He’s been on the sidelines ever since that loss, itching to get back the top spot he lost.
The story of this fight really can’t be told without Tyson Fury. Fury not only manged to be the first one to beat Wlad in 10 years, but managed to do so by winning basically every round of the fight. Wladimir would then spend the next year trying to set up a rematch to no avail. Fury’s battles with depression, drug abuse, alcoholism, and suicidal thoughts took that fight off the table for Wlad. With his opportunity for revenge gone, Wlad turned his eyes to the biggest possible fight available for him in Anthony Joshua.
What’s at Risk:
Besides heavyweight supremacy, the biggest thing at risk for Anthony Joshua is image. He is young, undefeated and since becoming a pro has been hailed as the next man to rule over the heavyweights. Problem is, he hasn’t faced anyone that is of elite status yet in the division despite being sold as invincible. It’s pretty easy to see why he’s such a draw, seeing as he’s built like an action figure:
Guy is basically straight out of a Vince McMahon wet dream. Would a loss to an aging Wladimir Klitschko who’s coming off a year of inactivity and an incredibly one sided loss hurt his stock? And does a win help propel him into the next global boxing star?
For Klitschko, the risk is time. He’s 41, he’s got a family that’s going through issues, he’s been fighting for well over 20 years, he lost his long time coach Emanuel Steward, and I have to image each camp is only getting harder. How much longer can he be competitive in this division? Does a KO loss hear basically put the stamp on his career? If he loses, he’s probably never getting another shot at Fury either so what fights are left for him really?
What to Expect:I’m not entirely sure. The last time we saw Klitschko fight a younger fighter w/ a similar height advantage, he looked gun shy and completely loss. But Fury is also a much more movement based fighter than the more straight forward bruiser that Joshua is. Does Klitschko freeze up when he taste Joshua’s power? At his age, is he going to be mobile enough to avoid eating punches? Can he implement the jab and clutch against a guy this big and strong? Does Klitschko still have it in him to go a solid 12 rounds against a dangerous opponent? Does he try to blitz Joshua early if he doesn’t think so?And for Joshua, we’ve never seen him in there with this level of competition before. We still haven’t seen him go 12 rounds yet. Does he fade if Klitschko can start working the punch and clutch? Can his bruiser style of fighting find a home on Klitschko? Can he take Klitschko’s power? Whatever does end up playing out, it’ll be an interesting narrative moving forward with guys like Wilder, Parker, and Fury still floating around out there.
My favorite thing: Thinking about how much fun Dick (the trolliest Robin) would have pranking the Young Justice team on April Fool’s Day:
Conner gets out of the shower to discover that the clothes he’d left had mysteriously been replaced with a pink bunny suit
M'gann tries to watch tv but finds that every channel on the television has been replaced by either Bee Movie or Rick Astley’s Never Gonna Give You Up music video and she doesn’t know which is worse
Artemis wakes up from a nap and doesn’t notice someone shaved off part of her eyebrow
Kaldur takes a swim but discovers that someone slipped dye in the pool and now his hair and skin is green
Raquel bites into an apple but realizes too late that it’s actually just a fake apple skin filled with ketchup
Roy goes into his apartment but is startled to find that every single surface has been covered completely in Shrek faces
Zatanna tries doing her homework but each of her pens self destructs five seconds after she touches it and turns into a flower (Dick just didn’t have it in him to do a mean prank, but he couldn’t leave her out of the April Fool’s fun)
Someone mysteriously tampered with Red Tornado’s programming and now he can only speak in rhymes
But he saves the best for Wally, because every year they have a competition to see who can prank the other the most. Dick has won four years in a row, whereas Wally has never succeeded in pranking Dick once
Just a few of the many pranks Dick has pulled on Wally this April Fool’s Day:
- Replacing the lenses of his goggles with pictures of naked Aquaman
- Paying everyone five bucks to call him Waldo and Speedy the entire day
- Changing the ringer on his phone to a recording of Conner screaming
- Convincing Zatanna to curse Wally to sing the entirety of Bohemian Rhapsody whenever someone says the word “whelmed”