Glenn McCrory believes Anthony Joshua could be in for a more arduous night against Oleksandr Usyk next Saturday on September 25th than in the fight against Wladimir Klitschko in 2017.
McCrory says the mobility, speed, southpaw stance, and the tricky manner in which Usyk (18-0, 13 KOs) fights makes him more of a problem for Joshua than Wladimir did four years ago.
IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Joshua (24-1, 22 KOs) and WBO mandatory Usyk will be headlining next Saturday night on Sky Box Office at the Tottenham Hotspurs Stadium in London, England.
Joshua is the overwhelming favorite to defeat the former undisputed cruiserweight champion Usyk, but that doesn’t matter.
McCrory notes that Joshua was stopped by Andy Ruiz Jr. in 2019, and he didn’t get hit much to have his chin tested in his two fights since against an out-of-shape Ruiz Jr. and 40-year-old Kubrat Pulev.
Because of those two fighters’ physical limitations, they weren’t able to land shots on Joshua. Usyk WILL land his shots, and Joshua will have to take them if he wants the win.
We don’t know if Joshua can handle getting hit repeatedly on the jaw by Usyk, as his punch resistance doesn’t match his Herculean physique.
Joshua has a tough fight
“He was the undisputed cruiserweight champion of the world. It would be very silly to ever underestimate someone as great a credibility and champion as Usyk,” said Glenn McCrory to Secondsout when asked if Anthony Joshua is underestimating Usyk.
“I think Joshua has a fight on his hands, and it’s difficult to figure out how it’s going to play out. Usyk can box, and he’s naturally lighter. The movement will be there.
“He can also punch as well. So it’ll be interesting to see how Joshua takes a punch. In the second Ruiz fight, he [Joshua] very much kept out of the way.
“He very much kept out of the way. He very much was on the back foot, so he never really got hit. Joshua will get hit; he will get his chin tested against Usyk.
“That’s a definite. If he can get his shot on first, his power might well tell. I think it’s a good fight, and I’m really looking forward to seeing how Anthony Joshua deals with the situation,” McCrory said.
Joshua isn’t underestimating Usyk, but you can tell by the way he sounds, he believes he’ll have no problems winning.
We saw the same overconfidence by Joshua in his first fight with Andy Ruiz Jr. in June 2019, and that didn’t work out well for him.
If Usyk can take the fight to the eighth round, as he did with Tony Bellew, he’ll have an excellent chance of knocking out a tired Joshua on September 25th.
Usyk’s movement makes him a big problem
“I think it’ll cause more problems, and I think people will automatically think he’s [Usyk] the smaller man, and that’ll give Joshua the benefit.
“But that poses its own problems. It’s a tricky night, and I’m really looking forward to it, and I’ll be there.
“It could be because of his movement,” said McCrory when asked why he believes Usyk can cause Joshua more problems than Wladimir Klitschko did.
“He’s not a big guy, Usyk, but also because of his style. The southpaw stance, how much is that going to pose a problem?
“When you’ve got a southpaw stance with a guy that is tough and can punch with mobility, that all adds up to a very tricky night.
“Joshua is really talented, and he could go out there and land a big shot, and it’ll all be over. But I think Usyk will be around for a while, and I think it will be a very difficult fight,” said McCrory.
Wladimir should have beaten Joshua in their fight, as he had him out on his feet in the sixth round, and Joshua was still hurt and exhausted until the 11th round.
If Wladimir hadn’t made the wrong decision to play it safe and box, he would have beaten Joshua. Usyk isn’t stupid. If Usyk can put Joshua in the same position Wladimir did, he’ll go for the knockout.
Usyk won’t leave out there and hope that he won’t get his second wind and pray that he can win a decision in London. Usyk knows where he’s fighting, and he’s not going to leave it up to the judges if he can help it.