IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Oleksandr Usyk has packed on some muscle size while preparing for the rematch against Anthony Joshua on August 20th in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. Usyk (19-0, 13 KOs) is well aware that Joshua (24-2, 22 KOs) will try and use his size and power to steamroll him in their second contest, so he’s put on some bulk to keep from being overwhelmed.
(Photo credit: Oleksandr Usyk Instagram).
Joshua has a new coach in Robert Garcia, and they plan on roughing up Usyk at any chance they can to get the win on August 20th. You can expect a much different Joshua than the one that was outboxed by Usyk last September at Tottenham Hotspurs Stadium in London, England.
Joshua is well aware that he used the wrong game plan for the first fight, so he will try and go back to the brawling style he’s used his entire career. That style might not be practical for Joshua if his chin or conditioning fails him against Usyk.
We got a glimpse of how Joshua will be fighting on August 20th when he came out on fire in the 12th round against Usyk and was immediately met with a storm of punches from the unbeaten Ukrainian. Usyk wasn’t going to roll over on Joshua in the 12th, and he retaliated with hard shots that quickly stunned AJ, sending him to the ropes in what appeared to be the last stand.
Joshua was fortunate that the time expired in the 12th round before Usyk could finish him.
“Oleksandr Usyk is a phenomenal boxer, and being a phenomenal boxer and having the tutelage that he has under his belt, there’s a fight between Canelo and Bivol; I called that fight from the very beginning; Russians have fought all different styles throughout their whole careers through the amateurs,” said Michael Moorer to Tru School Sports.
“I fought the Russian five times in the amateurs. As amateurs, they mastered the skills of every fighter; Mexicans, Puerto Ricans, Germans, Koreans, everybody. Canelo didn’t have a chance because those Russian fighters keep their game right, and they knew how to beat any style.
“There’s nobody I favor because Usyk has height, reach, and he knows how to fight. There are fighters today, and they won’t beat Usyk because Usyk had great tutelage. He fought in the amateurs throughout his career and fought different styles. He can fight anybody and beat them.
“I would stay on him, stay close to him. I wouldn’t give him the reach; I wouldn’t let him have the reach,” Moorer said when asked how he would beat Usyk.
“If I didn’t let him have the reach, he wouldn’t be effective because I would stay on the inside and not allow him to keep me at the end of his punches.
“Usyk is a great fighter. From the amateurs to the pros and bringing that amateur style, he’ll beat anybody,” said Moorer.