By Victor Salazar
New York - Anthony Joshua (22-0, 21 KO’s) is slated for an April 2019 return date at Wembley Stadium in London.
After stopping Alexander Povetkin (34-2, 23 KO’s) this past September, the question has been who will ultimately become his next opponent for that date. Joshua holds the WBC, WBA, IBO and IBF world heavyweight titles. Three of those titles carry mandatory obligations and some of them will be due by next year.
Kubrat Puvel (26-1, 13 KO’s) became Joshua's IBF mandatory when he defeating Hughie Fury last weekend.
However, Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn says that Pulev will have to wait in line for his turn.
“Kubrat Pulev will be the man Anthony Joshua will have to face after his WBO mandatory,” Hearn told BoxingScene.com.
“We are due to fight the WBO mandatory. That could be Dillian Whyte next. I made it clear we want Deontay Wilder next. But Pulev will come at some point, whether that’s back end of 2019 or early 2020, he will get his shot.”
Hearn says he would like to make the Joshua and Wilder (40-0, 39 KO’s) fight next.
But, should Tyson Fury (27-0, 19 KO’s) be victorious - that would not be possible.
“For now the mandatory order is the WBO then IBF,” Hearn stated. “Of course there will hopefully be unifications involved that would supersede those. If Fury was to win then the Wilder fight would be out of the question - because Wilder has a rematch clause. From a patriotic point of view, I want Fury to win, but from a Joshua career standpoint I want Wilder to win [because Wilder] is our number one priority.”
Waiting in the background should Joshua make his US debut is Jarrell Miller (22-0-1, 19 KO’s) who Hearn says is no easy out.
“If we came to America, Jarrell Miller would absolutely be the guy we want to fight. But we want to come to America but we’ll have to see. The focus with Jarrell is to pick up a regular title and be active. He’s going to be tough to beat," Hearn said.