Malik Scott, Deontay Wilder’s former opponent turned trainer, believes Anthony Joshua can’t stand up to the power his fighter has.
Although Wilder has been ordered to fight Andy Ruiz Jr, giving him a clear path back to a world title shot, his team have instead expressed interest in pursuing the elusive Joshua fight.
The two used to be champions in the division and could have, at one stage, fought for undisputed. Now both have tasted defeat and are without belts, but the intrigue of a match up remains.
Scott told The Good Fight with Kate Abdo that he wasn’t sure the time was right for ‘AJ.’
“The mental strength right now may not be there cause he lost two times to a smaller guy. So to go against that specimen called Deontay Wilder, you may need to build yourself up to take on that kind of fight, and I get it.”
Whilst the coach isn’t confident of Joshua taking the fight, he is confident of how it plays out when the two do step in the ring. He predicts yet another early night at the office for his fighter.
“But the advantages and the things I see Deontay doing to whatever AJ shows up – mentally tough, not mentally tough – it’s a three round fight in my opinion. He can’t get out the way.
Deontay’s just not a guy that’s a big guy that punches hard but he’s slow … no, it comes fast, if you wan’t get out the way of it you’re in trouble. And I AJ is in trouble is he signs the contract.”
The contract, of course, doesn’t quite exist yet – at least in its final form.
Whilst both teams are refreshingly open to working with one another, Joshua is yet to decide on a new training set up which will impact the choice of opponent for his ring return.
Announcements are expected before the turn of the year, however it may be much more likely that a Wilder bout is in future plans for ‘AJ’ rather than immediate.