Heavyweight prospect Jared Anderson was taken the distance for the first time in his professional career by former world champion Charles Martin in his latest bout – an outing Tim Bradley believes shows his current level.
The performance led plenty of observers to pump the brakes slightly on the hype surrounding the 23-year-old.
Anderson had stopped all of his fourteen opponents prior to Martin, and some were even claiming the young American was ready for the biggest names in the division.
However, former world champion Bradley claimed talk of top four opposition was premature when interviewed by State of Boxing.
“No, not yet,“
“After seeing his performance and seeing the punches that he was getting hit with as he was pulling straight back, he’s not ready.
My question is, what are they [Top Rank] grooming him for because he just fought a southpaw, and now he’s fighting another southpaw.”
Current unified heavyweight champion, Oleksandr Usyk, fights out of the southpaw stance. His British rival who holds the one remaining belt, Tyson Fury, is also partial to fighting lefty during periods.
Although Anderson will no doubt be disappointed his impressive knockout streak came to an end, going the full ten rounds with a seasoned pro like Martin will be of huge benefit to his development.
The fight was not without moments of struggle for Anderson, as ‘Prince’ Charles had him briefly hurt in the fifth round and seconds before the final bell.
It was a spirited performance from Martin, who showed up in good shape and with plenty of ambition, despite being drafted in as a replacement on just two weeks’ notice.
Anderson is back out on August 26 against Andriy Rudenko.