Rob McCracken, trainer of IBF, IBO, WBA heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua (19-0, 19 KOs), says the spectacular fight with Wladimir Klitschko was the perfect learning experience.
Last month, before a record crowd of over 90,000 fans at Wembley, Joshua stopped Klitschko in the eleventh round to unify the three heavyweight belts.
Joshua had Klitschko down in the fifth round, but then punched himself and started taking punishment by the end of the same round. Klitschko followed up by dropping Joshua hard in the sixth and nearly finishing him off.
Eventually Joshua was able to catch a second wind, dropping Klitschko twice in the eleventh before the referee waved off the contest.
"He will have learned a hell of a lot. He tightened up at times and I think the occasion got to him a little bit under Klitschko's pressure. But that's what boxing is about - it's all about learning. He will have learned so much in that fight - he will have learned as much in that fight as he has learned in his whole career," McCracken said to Sky Sports.
"When he hurt Klitschko he went for it and loaded up and got tired and then Klitschko jumped on him. Anthony did so well to come back from that big right hand Klitschko landed on him. What a comeback though - he rallied, regrouped, stayed calm and he got through it. He will have learned loads and he finished the fight with a brilliant knockout."
Now the possibility is there for a rematch in the fall. There is an immediate rematch clause and Klitschko will make his decision on that by early June.
If Klitschko decides to take a pass on the matter, then Joshua has two mandatory defenses in front of him. The likely candidate, according to Joshua's promoter Eddie Hearn of Matchroom Sport, would be the IBF's mandatory Kubrat Pulev.