David Haye wants Anthony Joshua to rough up Oleksandr Usyk in their rematch in early 2022 to ensure victory.
Joshua was outboxed by Usyk last Saturday night in losing to him by a 12 round unanimous decision at the Tottenham Hotspurs Stadium in London.
With that defeat, Joshua (24-2, 22 KOs) lost his IBF, WBA, and WBO heavyweight titles to Usyk. Joshua, 31, will have a heck of a time trying to win them back without him making massive changes to his fighting style.
Haye’s strategy for Joshua to win back his titles is a simple one. Get dirty by hitting on the break, pushing, and winning by using any means necessary.
You’d have to assume that rabbit punching would be a part of the approved game plan for Joshua to use against Usyk if the idea is to rough him up.
Joshua might want to talk with Tyson Fury so he can get tips on how to throw a textbook rabbit punch. We saw plenty of those thrown by Fury in his rematch with Deontay Wilder last year.
It’s kind of pathetic that Haye would want Joshua to resort to fouling to win, but that might chance AJ has got. He’s never going to outbox Usyk, and he can’t land his power shots due to the movement from the Ukrainian talent.
Rather than advising Joshua to get dirty, Haye should be telling him to dump his trainer Rob McCracken. That would be a much better recommendation from Haye than telling Joshua to make it dirty against Usyk.
Hopefully, a good referee is working the Joshua vs. Usyk rematch so that he can start taking points off if AJ starts with the dirty fighting.
Will Usyk beat Joshua in the rematch?
“Usyk is the man, and he proved he’s the man,” said David Haye to Fighthype. “The rematch, the big one, the one everyone is talking about already. What’s going to happen?
“Is the same thing going to happen again? Is he just better than him? Boxing, yes.
“If they have another boxing match like that, 100%, it goes the same way. Joshua gets another lesson about going into a fight with a game-ready plan.
“He needs to get down and dirty in there,” said Haye in recommending that Joshua rough up Usyk.
“Not everything is going to be clean. He’s going to hit hips, elbows, and aim not to land sometimes to get into range to land your power punches.
“I think AJ needs to start throwing it around if he can. To box someone at their game is a crazy thing to do.
“To try and have a boxing match against Usyk isn’t the way to go. When I say boxing match. I mean a straight-up boxing match.
“Jab for jab, and who can land the cleaner punches. Let’s not lean on the other person, and let’s not try and use your physical advantages.
“Grabbing him, pushing and pulling him, hitting him on the break. Roughing him up and getting your head in there, body shots,” said Haye.
Based on what we saw last Saturday night at the Tottenham Hotspurs Stadium, you’d have to say Usyk beats Joshua in the rematch.
Joshua isn’t a good enough boxer to beat Usyk, and he’ll likely lose just as bad the second time around.
Joshua will probably revert to the Wladimir Klitschko style of fighting by running, jabbing, and holding in the rematch. In other words, Joshua will fight as he did in his rematch with Andy Ruiz Jr.
Joshua showed no desperation
“There was no real desperation [from Joshua],” said a disappointed-sounding Haye. “There was no real life or death.
“I think when he incorporates that into his style; then I think all the things that I believe will come true.
“What happened just there with Usyk’s silky-slick moves and timing. He wasn’t even moving his legs that much, and he didn’t need to, and he was moving his head more.
“That fight was exactly what Usyk hoped it would be, and he went out there and handed it to him. He [Joshua] learned a lesson before from Andy Ruiz, but this is a very different lesson.
“He took it very seriously. That was a big upset; no one was expecting that to happen. Well, definitely not me,” said Haye about Joshua’s loss to Usyk.
“Two real smart people told me that Usyk was going to do exactly what he did. Yes, guys, you’re better than me. I got this wrong,” said Haye.
Joshua needs to walk Usyk down using quick feet and then let his hands go.
If Joshua focuses on throwing nonstop punches, it won’t matter if he misses with his shots. He can continue to throw while in close after a miss.
Interestingly we didn’t see any inside fighting from Joshua last Saturday, even though Usyk was there to be hit with uppercuts.
Joshua wanted to be desperate, but he was missing too frequently and getting countered by Usyk. The fight was like watching the Wladimir Klitschko vs. Tyson Fury match from 2015.
Wladimir was throwing single punches the entire fight, and he became afraid to let his hands go because Fury was countering him when he would miss.
If Wladimir had thrown sustained combinations, it wouldn’t have mattered if he’d missed a shot. He would have kept throwing.
When a heavyweight loads up on single shots the way Wladimir used to and Joshua does now, they struggle when they fight defensive guys.
Andy Ruiz Jr. showed how to beat Joshua by throwing combinations. That approach might work against Usyk, but Joshua doesn’t seem capable of doing that due to his poor stamina.
Fury vs. Wilder 3 winner faces Joshua-Usyk 2 winner
“[Deontay] Wilder is making the right noises,” said Haye. “[Tyson] Fury, is Fury just a better specimen?
“Has he got his number? The smart money is on that being the case. But upsets happen in boxing, but it’s all too soon to fight for now.
“Once that man wins, whether it’s a Fury win or Wilder win, they know there’s only one man to beat then.
“That’s the winner of AJ vs. Usyk rematch. I’m sure they’ll be thinking it’s Usyk, but it’s still up for grabs. Great times,” said Haye.
It’ll be interesting if Deontay Wilder unseats WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury next month on October 9th. We could potentially see a fight between Wilder and Usyk if he beats Joshua in their rematch.