Frank Warren has a hard time seeing how the unified heavyweight champion of the world can stand up to the withering pressure of his ace client, hard-hitting British contender Joe Joyce.
Warren, the head of Queensberry Promotions, was an elated spectator Saturday night at Manchester Arena in Manchester, England, where Joyce knocked out former champion Joseph Parker in the 11th-round. It was easily the biggest win of the 37-year-old’s career, and sent a stern message to the rest of the heavyweight class. It was the first time Parker had ever been stopped.
So confident is Warren in Joyce’s ability that he fancies his client over the current unified WBO, WBA, and IBF champion Oleksandr Usyk, who is coming off two consecutive decisions over former champion Anthony Joshua. The southpaw Usyk is known for his dexterity and nimble footwork, while Joyce is noted for his power, chin, and relentlessness.
The two, furthermore, fought in the ring as amateurs, in 2013, in the World Series of Boxing. Usyk outpointed Joyce then.
“You won’t want to fight him,” Warren said of Joyce in an interview with iFL TV. “If I was Usyk would I want to fight him? Who would you back? I think Usyk, I know they’ve got history in amateurs, but that was amateurs. Look at the size of him (Joyce).
“I don’t know how Usyk can beat him to be quite honest. He’ll try and outbox him but I think he’ll just wear him down, he’s such a big man. And he doesn’t back off of you. I think he gives Usyk a lot, a lot of problems.”
“He’s got the most apt nickname in the sport, which is ‘The Juggernaut,’ which is exactly what he is, because he’s relentless,” added Warren, who also promotes heavyweight contender Daniel Dubois. “BT (network) and Queensberry is the home of heavyweight boxing. It’s where it’s all at.”
Warren said he expects Joyce (15-0, 14 KOs) to get in the ring again in March, before getting the call to challenge the WBO champion, which could very well be Usyk (20-0, 13 KOs).
“He’ll fight again in March and then, well, he’s in the mix now,” Warren said. “He’s the interim champion, so his mandatory (WBO) is due. They’ll have to fight him.”