Former WBO heavyweight champion Joseph Parker is ready to take a big step up in class against Dillian Whyte or Joe Joyce in his next fight after fiddling with mostly journeymen-level opposition for the last four years.
Parker (30-2, 21 KOs) is still young at 30 and is coming off a one-sided 12-round unanimous over veteran Derek Chisora last December.
That fight gave Parker a confidence boost, as he dropped the normally steel-chinned Chisora three times and had him close to being knocked out on each occasion.
Parker would like to avenge his loss to Whyte (28-3, 19 KOs) in 2018. That was a close fight and one that Parker likely would have gone if he’s been more aggressive.
The New Zealander let Whyte rough him up for the first 11 rounds until finally fighting with some aggression for the first time in the contest in the 12th.
Parker dropped Whyte and had him close to being knocked out, but unfortunately, he waited too long. If Parker had fought with the same passion in the earlier rounds, he likely would have easily knocked Whyte out, as he doesn’t have the sturdiest chins.
“I believe with my full heart that I can be champion of the world again. I know there are a lot of doubters, but I don’t care,” said Parker to Sky Sports.
Parker’s recent opposition:
- Dereck Chisora x 2
- Junior Fa
- Shawndell Terrell Winters
- Alex Leapai
- Alexander Flores
“I can do the business on Joe Joyce,” said Parker. “That’s a fight that can still happen. I know that Ben Shalom is in talks with Frank Warren.
It would be better for Parker to fight Whyte if he can get that match and then face Joyce later. It’s been so many years since Parker fought a solid heavyweight that it would be a shock for him to get in there with Joyce and get hit back for the first time in years.
The only question is would Whyte be willing to take a fight against a dangerous puncher like Parker?
With Whyte coming off a sixth-round knockout loss to Tyson Fury on April 23rd, he’s probably looking for an easy foe to get his confidence back up. Parker would be anything easy, which is why it’s unlikely Whyte or his promoter Eddie Hearn will take a fight with him.
“Dillian Whyte is another great fight; We had a very great fight in 2018, a very entertaining fight. If we do run it back, I’ll get the better of him,” Parker said.
Their fight in 2018 wasn’t all that entertaining due to Parker fighting passively until the 12th. It would still be an exciting match, but whether Whyte and Hearn would agree to the rematch with Parker is doubtful.