Malik Scott, trainer of Deontay Wilder, has voiced his opinion on the current form of two-time world champion, Anthony Joshua.
The Brit has lost three of his last six fights after looking unstoppable during the earlier days of his career, although two of those contests came against one of the best of the world in Oleksandr Usyk.
Many feel the shock defeat to Andy Ruiz in 2019 has had a lasting effect on the 33-year-old, who has just one knockout victory since 2018 and once again didn’t get the stoppage he was craving on his comeback against Jermaine Franklin.
In an interview with Boxing King Media, Scott detailed the impact that Joshua’s loss to Ruiz had on his ability to let his hands go.
“He comes across as a little bit gun-shy. Ever since he fought Ruiz, even when he has looked at his best, in my opinion against [Kubrat] Pulev and Ruiz II, those were still real tactical, safety-first victories for him.”
Scott thinks Joshua’s main issue is he’s ‘overthinking’ things too much.
“Ever since that [loss to Ruiz], he has been overthinking in the ring, for someone that big, someone that strong, that can be that imposing on his opponent, that is not a good thing.
AJ is not a slick guy, he doesn’t punch a little bit hard, he punches very hard. He’s a fast guy, he’s actually known for being one of the latest heavyweights that puts their punches together very well, but why hasn’t he been putting punches together well in his last three/four fights against smaller opponents? It is not a physical thing, I don’t think it is a trainer thing, I think this is a mental thing.”
The trainer went on to claim that if Wilder was faced with this version of AJ, as opposed to the ruthless, aggressive one of old, then his man would have no trouble ending the fight within three rounds.
Wilder may have to wait for his shot, as Dillian Whyte has been hotly tipped to be next in line to face Joshua.