In the noble art of Boxing, the ‘boxer’ is defined by characteristics of their pugilistic skill and intellect, combined with slick dynamic mechanical movements which produces a furnished slew of attributes, meticulously mastering the essence of hitting without being hit in what becomes a rhythmical and strategic dance within a ballet-blood-pit domain.
Thrown into the amalgamation of fighters that trade leather in the midst of the square jungle, you will find a ‘puncher’, whose primary weapon is the ability to generate and unleash such ferocious and velocitized, wrecking-ball momentum, detonating on impact like brass knuckles shattering a glass jaw.
A formidable powerhouse-banger who dishes out brutal beat-downs and bruising bust-ups like they’re going out of style. A dangerous and lethal fighter whom at any point in a fight can render their opponents canvas backed in a sprawled-out state.
Obscene millions and cheap Youtube talk aside; the fundamentals of the highly conceptualised unification clash between Anthony Joshua and Deontay Wilder could arguably be boiled down to a title bout that consists of two punchers, one boxer. An obvious analysis I’m sure, but does this battle navigate beyond the physicalities, resulting in psychological fisticuffs?
Not for a moment do I believe AJ harbors any fear or doubts in his ability to beat Wilder, however, I do believe Joshua is conscious he’s facing an opponent that is capable of seriously hurting him or sparking him unconscious. An opponent who ultimately can jeopardise his career, reputation and annihilate his dreams and aspirations of becoming the undisputed and unified, heavy weight champion of the world.
A pressuring conception for AJ no doubt.
Anthony Joshua has been regarded by some as the ‘complete boxer’; a statement or implication that suggests he has all the physical and theoretical attributes and necessaties to defeat his rivals, carving out an unblemished heavy weight career that will reverberate throughout boxing history.
Joshua, in my opinion is the one whom possesses the more natural pugilism, excellent footwork, strong technical abilities and skill that notoriously breaks down the defences of his opponents with fast, hard shots before walking them down and unloading with a barrage of thunderous and pummelling combinations. Although we did see the former two time heavy weight champion, Wladimir Klitschko expose and very nearly upset the unification ascending course in which AJ is still on route for.
A towering 6ft 7″, 15stone 10lbs physical heavy weight- hybrid whose lanky- skinny legs scaffold a gangly, yet lean and muscled statue and conformation. A physique that becomes a perilous weapon of mayhem and destruction, throwing hard-solid shots, wildly swinging muscly spaghetti-like arms in a frenzied punching onslaught, demolishing and obliterating fighters into a straggled heap.
It’s fairly apparent that Wilder’s boxing forte is not within the parameters of pugilistic intelligence, nor could he lay claim to any proficient technique or graceful footwork. However, Wilder more than compensates and counters with a raw, brutal strength and a primal-predatory ferocity that detects fighters vulnerabilities and weaknesses, like a shark sensing a mere droplet of blood in miles of ocean before attacking its prey.
AJ is the paper-based versioned favourite, despite Wilder’s impressive 40-39-0 vs. AJ’s 21-20-0. You may even want to further equip Joshua’s armour by laminating it a few times to allow more durability; commending and lauding the champion’s speed, power, accuracy and of course his trademark head snapping, feet elevating knockout uppercuts.
However, I feel Wilder is the one who’ll be willing to get stuck in, stand toe-to-toe and trade explosive-whamming bombs in order to win the bout. Since his gruelling victory over Wladimir Klitschko in 2017, it would seem the realisation of nearly losing that fight has pivoted re-aligned the current WBA, WBO, IBA and IBO champion in a different angle – a more defensive perspective as oppose to the days of blasting opponents out and across the ring in a magnificent display of power, skill and determination.
Joshua, nowadays, seems to tread with caution, taking more of a strategic chess match enforcement; utilising dynamics, fundamental advantages, knowledge and experience rather than sheer punching power, strength and an imposing physicality.
Are those days well and truly gone? Was that night at Wembley arena a lesson learned that’s instilled a fear that now hinders his potential or as it improved and nourished AJ’s game, raising and broadening his abilities to another level of adept boxing?
Hopefully it won’t be too long for us to find out!