British boxing legend and current promoter Barry McGuigan believes that compatriot heavyweight Anthony Joshua (24-3, 22 KOs) should not fight American puncher Deontay Wilder (43-2-1, 42 KOs).
McGuigan understands Joshua’s high market value, so
thinksthat if “Anthony really aims to take the championship title for the third time, then he will not have problems finding opponents. But if this is the case, then he and his team need to carefully select opponents. In their place, I would avoid only one fighter – Wilder. I know Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn mentioned Deontay the other day, but who is he trying to fool? At this point in my career, it’s too risky a fight. I think that this year Anthony needs to raise the level of opposition very carefully and consistently.”
McGuigan also remembers that the Briton first needs to decide on a new mentor: “Task number 1 is to find a suitable coach. What kind of specialist do they need? The one that can do two things with Joshua – return to the roots and reboot Anthony psychologically. What do I mean when I talk about going back to basics? Basic things: learn to combine, learn head movements. It definitely needs to be implemented. I sometimes feel like Joshua was never taught that.”
McGuigan thinks Joshua can do it: “I’m not saying it’s going to be easy. But this is definitely not some unrealistic goal. This is quite learnable. But one thing is important here. Anthony should listen to the coach. He must be an authority for him, because otherwise he will not teach him anything new. And this is where a problem can arise. After all, there are not many mentors in the world who inspire the necessary respect in fighters of this caliber.
The other day a British top coach talked a lot about Joshua. He does not consider AJ a star, told what Robert Garcia made a mistake, claims that “Anthony also turned to me for advice. But what is the point of asking and not listening?”