British fighting legend Ricky Hatton MBE feels that judgement should be somewhat reserved on Anthony Joshua’s post-fight antics following his loss to Oleksandr Usyk, but called on AJ’s team to do more.
‘The Hitman’ Hatton spoke to Boxing Social about Joshua’s outburst in the ring that drew disapproval from fans. In an analysis coming from experience, he believes people shouldn’t be so quick to criticise fighters
“Boxing’s hard and people have their say on the situation and I think sometimes, you know, hang on a minute, you’ve never been in that situation, you’ve never been in a boxing match, you’ve never been in a boxing match at that level with that pressure. It’s dead easy to judge when you’ve not done it and you’ve not been there.”
“I think AJ, when he watches it back, he’ll think to himself ‘Sh*t – I went a bit over the top there.’ But your emotions are all over the show – there’s lot of pressure, a lot at stake.”
However, Hatton went on to call out AJ’s corner – insisting that the team should have acted to prevent it happening.
“I think his team could’ve done more for him. Because, I mean, he was stomping around the ring – not saying he was going to kill someone – but he looked like he was going to kill someone. He was going up to the opposition’s cornermen and giving it a little bit heavier than he should’ve been. Then he threw the belts out the ring and you could see he was getting a little bit anxious, and I think someone should’ve put an arm around him and gone ‘Come here, AJ, let’s get you back to the changing room.’
But no, nobody did it. They let him carry on , storming up and down around the room. Nobody came and had a whisper in his ear saying calm down now, you’ve done [yourself] proud tonight.”
“It’s about having the right people around you. AJ has got good friends around him, family around him, and the 258 team have done a great job, they also work with Campbell [Hatton]. I just think you could see him on the verge of losing it – why wasn’t anyone there to step in?”
“I don’t think it’s Eddie’s job. I think Eddie’s the promoter and he’s doing his job, and Eddie is very close to AJ … That team in the corner – your job is to look after your boxer. Did they look after him when the final bell went? Did they act right? Did they f*ck. I don’t think they did anyway.”
Following the fight, Joshua, who is in talks to face Tyson Fury next, took to social media to promise to ‘do better.’