The world of boxing is permeated by great heavyweight fighters
. Names like Sonny Liston, Joe Frazier and Muhammad Ali engender images of savage blows, nimble footwork and absolute ruthlessness on the ropes. These are the big daddies of the sport; men who have earned their stripes in some of the most vicious bouts in the history of boxing.
The era of the big men like Jack Dempsey, George Foreman, Rocky Marciano and Joe Louis may be done and dusted but waiting in the shadows for their time in the sun is a new, young generation of fighters who have the license to entertain in the ring.
In 2018 there are two powerful young men who have the bulk, brawn and boxing instinct to follow in the footsteps of giants. Although still in the fledgling stage of their careers these are the champion heavyweight boxers of the current era who share a 98 percent KO-to-win ratio.
All that currently separates them is the Atlantic Ocean and a few ranking points. They are Anthony Joshua and Deontay Wilder… and the odds are they’ll meet in the ring sooner rather than later. The burning question is; which of them is the incumbent Big Daddy of world heavyweight boxing?
Image Source: sportsnet.ca
Brit Anthony Joshua (born in Watford, UK, to Nigerian parents, Yeta, and Robert Joshua) follows a long line of prime boxers born and bred in Nigeria. Men like Samuel Peter, Henry Akinwande, Herbie Hide and Ike Ibeabuchi are role models the powerful young boxer of Yoruba descent would have looked up to for sheer style and inspiration.
To date the 28-year-old has won 21 fights in 21 bouts. The standout feature of his career is that all his wins, bar one, were by knock-out. The three-time World Title belt holder lifted gold at the 2012 Summer Olympics and is currently ranked the world’s best heavyweight boxer.
His bout against Wladimir Klitschko at Wembley Stadium attracted a live audience of more than 90 000 fans and around 9,5 million viewers world-wide tuned in to watch the powerhouse decimate his opponent.
Initially, Joshua emulated the ‘gutter’ boxing style of Mike Tyson but in recent times he has taken a more disciplined approach to boxing, a trait he learnt from Klitschko. Although he fights tough - delivering brutal upper cuts from the centre of the ring at will - Joshua is all calmness and respect outside the ring.
Image Source: thebrawling.com
Tall, rangy and athletic Deontay Wilder is the pride of the USA. He is also the perfect foil to Joshua as instead of relying on brute force, Wilder is renowned for his speed, footwork and movement around the ring. The 32-year-old has left a trail of destruction in his wake, racking up 40 wins in 40 bouts, 39 of which were knock-outs.
The biggest weapon in Wilder’s arsenal is the massive single-shot power in his right hand. He’s also feared for his savage crosses, long range jabs, size and power. As with Joshua, The Bronze Bomber has stopped every opponent he’s faced but what makes him so lethal is his ability to destroy the best of the rest inside the first round!
Wilder is the current WBC heavyweight title holder. With his closest rival in the form of Joshua the incumbent IBF, WBO and WBA World Champion, the prospect of the two going toe-to-toe is a tantalising prospect indeed!
Who’s the Champ of heavyweight boxing in 2018? Only time will tell… but my money is on the younger man provided he can finetune his defensive skills and bring a bit of fancy footwork into the ring.
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