Jermaine Franklin frontrunner for Anthony Joshua fight in April

01/13/2023 - By Michael Collins - Comments

Jermaine Franklin has emerged as the new frontrunner in place of Demsey McKean as the next opponent for Anthony Joshua to fight on April 1st at the O2 Arena in London. Joshua fighting Franklin would signal that he wants a real fight and not a cream puff opponent for his April 1st bout.

It would be a risky fight for Joshua to take on Franklin because he possesses the talent that could give AJ massive problems. With the way Franklin dominated Dillian Whyte last November, he’s capable of defeating Joshua and sending him into retirement.

Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn said that if he loses his next fight in April, his career will be over because that would be his third consecutive defeat in 2021.

“You go into that fight in April; you know that with defeat, it’s all over, really. It would be a third back-to-back defeat,” Eddie Hearn said to iFL TV about Anthony Joshua’s next contest in April.

Losing at the hands of Oleksandr Usyk twice is forgivable on Joshua’s part, but if he gets beaten by Franklin, it would be clear that he needs to hang up his gloves.

“Anthony Joshua’s hunt for a comeback opponent on April 1 has turned to Jermaine Franklin. Franklin is one of the front runners among a group of fighters who are in contention,”  said Chris McKenna to the Daily Star about Anthony Joshua’s potential opponent for April 1st in London, England.

YouTube video

“Demsey McKean has been linked as another potential opponent, but he is not expected to be picked to face Joshua.

Franklin, 29, is coming off a controversial 12 round majority decision loss to Dillian Whyte on November 26th at the Wembley Arena in London.

Many boxing fans had Franklin handily winning, as he’d dominated Whyte through the first nine rounds, appearing to build up an insurmountable lead.

Although Whyte did fight reasonably well in the championship rounds, he was still getting outworked by the volume punching from Franklin. The judges gave Whyte the victory by the scores 116-112, 116-112, and 115-115. This writer had Franklin winning by a 118-110 score.

It wasn’t close, as Franklin was the much faster puncher and the more dominant fighter of the two, making the 34-year-old Whyte look much older than his chronological age.

Franklin (21-1, 14 KOs) is an excellent option for the former two-time heavyweight champion Joshua to begin his three-fight rebuilding process for 2023 by his promoter Hearn.

The American is the kind of fighter that will prepare Joshua for tougher tests against Deontay Wilder, Tyson Fury, and Joe Joyce.

There’s no deal yet for the Joshua vs. Franklin fight. The undefeated fringe contender Demsey McKean is no longer expected to be picked to face AJ, which will make many boxing fans happy because they felt he was a poor choice.