Joe Joyce turned on the firepower and took out Carlos Takam in stopping him in the sixth round on Saturday night at the SSE Arena in London, and then immediately said he wants the Anthony Joshua vs. Oleksandr Usyk winner next.
Joyce had to take many hard shots from Takam tonight, but he took them and didn’t stop coming forward. Things weren’t looking good for Joyce in the first three rounds.
In the fifth, Joyce turned things around, hurting Takam with a big shot near the end of the round. It was clear in between rounds that Takam needed a miracle to survive the sixth round.
In the sixth, Joyce ended the fight, hurting Takam with a shot that caused him to stagger towards the ropes. Joyce then added a handful of nice punches that caused the referee to stop the fight.
Takam was angry at the end about the fight getting stopped in what he believed was premature fashion.
It was troubling to see Takam hitting Joyce repeatedly with shots and looking he had a chance to win the fight before getting stopped in the sixth. Defensively, Joyce looked lost tonight, and he was lucky that he was in there with a short old guy that is well past it.
Joe Joyce’s promoter chose well to select fringe contender Takam as his opponent for this fight rather than a younger lion like Frank Sanchez or Filip Hrgovic.
Had Joyce had to fight one of those guys tonight, he might have lost. Joyce had a hard enough time just trying to beat Takam, who is arguably ten years past his prime.
Joyce, 35, kept his position as the WBO mandatory for the title, which is still hands of Joshua (24-1, 22 KOs).
Unfortunately, Joyce (13-0, 12 KOs) isn’t likely to get the Joshua-Usyk winner, but he could get the loser if he’s lucky.
In the sixth round, Joyce hurt the 40-year-old Takam (39-6-1, 28 KOs) after catching him with a tremendous hook to the head.
The referee Steve Gray decided that he’d seen enough, and he jumped in and stopped the fight, much to the displeasure of Takam. He did not look like a happy camper, and you can certainly see why.
If Takam had somehow survived that moment in the fight and came back to stop Joyce, he’d be the one in line for a world title shot to make millions.
Tonight’s victory gives Joyce his 13th straight since he turned professional in 2017 after winning a silver medal in the 2016 Olympics.
Joshua is defending his IBF, WBA & WBO heavyweight titles against his WBO mandatory Usyk (18-0, 13 KOs) on September 25th at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in North London.
Joyce has a small chance of fighting the winner of the Joshua vs. Usyk fight, but it’s not likely to happen.
Whoever emerges as the winner of the Joshua vs. Usyk fight will wait for the outcome on the October 9th fight between WBC champion Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder.
Whoever wins that fight is going to meet with Joshua in February unless they choose not to. Fury isn’t going to turn down a possible $100 million payday, and I would venture to guess that Wilder won’t either.
Joyce will have to wait for a while, possibly all of next year, before he gets a title shot against the WBO champion.
After the fight tonight, Joyce said he wanted Joshua or Usyk next.
“What I want is AJ or Usyk,” said Joyce to BT Sport about who he wants next. “I don’t need any more tests. I’ve started at the deep end, and I’ve carried on at a steady trajectory.”
Joyce will have to fight someone because you figure he’s got the remaining five months of 2021 to wait, and probably all of 2022 as well before he can get a title shot.
If Joyce is going to sit and do nothing while he waits for his eventual title shot, he will be in no position to win the fight.
It’s going to be interesting, though, to see who Joyce’s promoter picks for him next time. Will they find him another old guy to fight, or will they pick someone young and can actually fight. My guess is Joyce will be matched against 40-year-old Chris Arreola next.