The former coach turned pundit Teddy Atlas has been previewing an upcoming heavyweight fight and thinks one contender looked ‘shot’ in his last outing.
This weekend sees a rematch between two big men who are fringe world title contenders looking to secure themselves shots at champions, Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk.
The first match was back in April when Joe Joyce suffered a surprise TKO loss to China’s Zhilei Zhang who outboxed him from his southpaw stance and badly damaged Joyce’s eye.
The rematch comes on Saturday at Wembley Arena in London and is seen as make or break for ‘The Juggernaut’.
Speaking on THE FIGHT, Atlas expressed his concerns over Joyce’s health.
“Zhang is 40 years old, Joyce is 37-38, but Joyce has more miles on the odometer. I always say you don’t judge somebody’s age in boxing chronologically, you judge them by the punches and punishment they have taken and in that way, Joyce is the older fighter.”
He went on to say Joyce gets hit too much even in his winning fights.
“You just can’t get hit that much, I know he has an iron chin and I know he was catching up to everybody, and he can punch. He was always slow, cemented-footed, hittable but has a great chin and great heart and when he finally got to you he usually got rid of you but he takes a lot of punishment to get there.”
Atlas then claimed Joyce looked ‘shot’ in his last fight before laying out his chances in the rematch.
“That punishment has a toll. He looked like a shot fighter in this last fight. Maybe he got sick, maybe something happened where he didn’t have a good camp, mitigating circumstance, maybe. And if that’s the case maybe he wins this time.”