Anthony Joshua’s trainer, Derrick James, has responded to the growing speculation that his man will face American knockout artist, Deontay Wilder, later this year.
Joshua and Wilder, at one stage, were tipped to fight to crown an undisputed heavyweight champion. Those talks fell apart, and both men have since lost their belts.
The matchmaking remains perhaps the most intriguing that the division can offer, and, without the shackles of mandatory challengers, looks more likely than ever.
Saudi Arabia have shown a keen interest to stage the fight this year, and are understood to have made good progress in doing so. Their intervention on the heavyweight scene also includes ambitious plans to put on Tyson Fury versus Oleksandr Usyk.
‘AJ’ split with longtime trainer, Rob McCracken, after his first loss to Oleksandr Usyk. A link up with Robert Garcia for the rematch also ended in defeat, and he sought the highly-regarded tutelage of James thereafter.
The pair have had one fight together – a unanimous decision victory over Jermaine Franklin in April.
The trainer told ES News that he knew nothing of the Wilder talks.
“I don’t know anything about it, first of all.
We’ll start working [if it happens, but] I haven’t heard it. I saw it on the internet, or whatever, but that doesn’t matter.”
James said that the bout was ‘no doubt’ big for boxing should it happen.
It’s worth noting that it’s a typical trainer stance on a rumoured fight, born from working off of confirmed information, game plans and camp schedules rather than speculation. With the clash rumoured for December, there’s still plenty of time to work.
All of the other information surrounding the fight looks positive, with both fighters and their teams having confirmed the interest and initial talks.