WBO, IBO, WBA, IBF heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua retained his world titles, and inflicted the first stoppage defeat of Alexander Povetkin’s professional career with a ruthless seventh-round finish at Wembley Stadium in London.
But whether this win takes Joshua any closer to a fight with WBC titleholder Deontay Wilder, who next fights Britain’s former world champion Tyson Fury on December 1, remains to be seen.
Joshua, whose promoter is Eddie Hearn, is already booked for Wembley for April 13, against an opponent to be determined.
Joshua notably discussed both Wilder and Whyte as options, but left Fury off his list of potential opponents. And the Gypsy King didn’t take kindly to the omission, taking to Instagram to vent his frustration.
“I think it’s safe to say now, that neither Team Joshua or Matchroom [Boxing] will ever fight the Gypsy King,” Fury said.
“Never. They mentioned if it’s not Wilder it’ll be Whyte. There’s no mention of Tyson Fury, the lineal heavyweight champion of the world.
“It’s alright fighting men, 39-years-old [Povetkin], half your size. Tonight is pure evidence that I’m fighting the best heavyweight out there in Deontay Wilder; Joshua’s not even close.
“He’s slow, methodical, ponderous at times. Powerful, yes. But they all are. Very, very clear to see. Avoid me at all costs. If I was you Joshua, I’d avoid me, because I will jab your face off, you bum ... Haghtag bum city, can’t box ... easy’s night’s work.
“I’ve never seen a bigger bum in my life.”
Fury, who is still the lineal champion with a victory over Wladimir Klitschko in November of 2015, is arguably the biggest possible domestic fight for Joshua. Should Fury upset the odds and defeat Wilder, it would make a fight with Joshua the richest event to make and possibly the biggest money fight in the history of British boxing.