Ahead of an action-packed couple of months in boxing, US Bookies have spoken with former super-heavyweight and Olympic gold medallist, Audley Harrison. He shared his thoughts on:
– How Anthony Joshua will fair against Andy Ruiz Jr.
– Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder
– The KSI vs Logan Paul fight this weekend
Audley Harrison: If AJ can use his distance and power, he will beat Ruiz
“I have known about Ruiz for quite a while so when I heard that Joshua is going to fight him, I was surprised as people assumed it would be an easy win for Joshua, but I knew his power and technique. In the rematch, Ruiz will know that he can hurt Joshua, and will take confidence from that. He will be a much tougher opponent in the rematch, but Anthony Joshua is a smart guy, he knows he made mistakes in that first fight and has had plenty of time to work on them. If Joshua can use his distance and power, he will know that he can beat Ruiz up. If I was Joshua, I would keep him at distance and use the right hand to get on top of his opponent.”
Audley Harrison: Anthony Joshua needs to put everything on the line for his fight against Ruiz
“He can’t be thinking of those fights. This fight against Ruiz, is too important for him to look far ahead. This fight is all he needs to be thinking about. It does not make any sense for him to look past Ruiz right now as this fight paves the way for his next fights after. This fight is everything and he needs to put everything on the line for this.”
Anthony Joshua shouldn’t get too excited early in the fight
“It could go either way. Ruiz will be full of confidence; he has lost weight so will be quicker and will be looking to open Joshua up like he did in the first fight. Joshua’s game plan this time will be more about keeping the distance and using his jab, tying him up when he gets in close. Anthony Joshua will hurt him, like he did in the first fight, but he can’t get too excited and look to finish him too early. I see Joshua winning this fight as I think Ruiz might be overly confident and that could be his downfall. I think he can pull it off and shock Ruiz.”
Audley Harrison- Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder are the top two in the heavyweight division
“It is really hard to call now. You would have to say Tyson Fury, Deontay Wilder and Anthony Joshua. Anthony Joshua is in a vital time in his career with the rematch against Andy Ruiz Jr coming up. He has little to gain but everything to lose in this fight. Whereas Ruiz will be coming into this, having learnt a lot from the first fight, he has little to lose and everything to gain. Ruiz will throw everything at Joshua and Anthony will need to have a strong game plan to get through the fight. It is going to be a tough fight, Ruiz has quick hands, and will be even quicker than the first fight. I am going to go for AJ, I think he will get the knockout and will return to one of the top positions in the heavyweight division.
It is hard to say who is top of the division right now, but the Wilder vs Fury rematch is an eagerly awaited fight that everyone is looking forward to. If you ask an American, they will put Wilder at the top of the division but if you speak to a Brit, they will put Fury as number one. I think the rematch will decide that. They are one and two right now, with Joshua sitting at number three.
Oleksandr Usyk will come in and challenge them with his style of boxing but he lacks the power in what these heavyweights have and that is where he will struggle. He is a unique fighter and think he will do well.”
Audley Harrison Exclusive: Eddie Hearn has done amazingly for world boxing
“It all started with prize fighter for Eddie. Since then, he has not looked back. Of course, you want to be loved, but I believe that the fans respect him for what he has done in the boxing world and I know the boxers respect him. These boxers are making good money and are in the public eye and you are getting your just rewards with your talent with Eddie.”
Audley Harrison Exclusive: KSI and Logan Paul need to do the basics right
“KSI did it well in the first fight. He managed to get around him and I thought KSI looked good in that fight. I think there will be a lot of head and feet movement and a lot of combination punches. For Logan, it is about the jab and beating him up, getting in close and trying to rough him up.”