Unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua 24-1 (22) has responded to claims from retired boxer David Haye that he will knock out former undisputed cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Usyk 18-0 (13) with a jab.
The 31-year-old Englishman is scheduled to defend his WBA, WBO and IBF titles against the Ukrainian southpaw at Tottenham Hotspurs Stadium in Tottenham, UK on September 25.
Joshua has been reviewing old tapes of former cruiserweight champion Evander Holyfield when he made the move up to heavyweight.
“I was watching Holyfield and [James ‘Quick’] Tillis today and [Tillis] was saying he was going to come and bring war and if he wins he’s going to come and fight [Mike] Tyson and rematch him and he lost in I think the fifth round,” Joshua said to Sky Sports.
“So it shows that what I say and what people say doesn’t really matter when you’re in the ring.
“I respect it and everyone is entitled [to their opinion] and that’s why I say one of these days I’m going to be that guy on the sidelines.
“But as for now, I wish Usyk a great camp and I wish his team well, safe travels. The same with my team.
“The main thing, we keep boxing alive and get in there and put on a good fight and that’s what we’re here to do and what I’m here to do. He’s here to do the same.”
Even though he says he is not underestimating Usyk, Joshua admits he is hoping for a knockout.
“I’m not sure how it’s going to end,” Joshua said. “I’m not sure if it’s going to be a jab or an uppercut.
“I don’t know what shot it’s going to be, but I just want to come out and put on a good show for the people that are coming to watch.
“When I fight good fighters I study them and I get to learn a lot about their training camps. So from fighting Dillian [Whyte] and when I fought [Andy] Ruiz, I learned from that fight.
“The Klitschkos of the world and now Usyks of the world, and Joseph Parker, when he was a champion, and from the Olympics and World Championships.
“I’ve studied a lot so I’ve learned to condition my body for certain fights. I’m looking trim for this fight and I’m fighting a guy that is a 12 round fighter. It would be silly for me to go in there bulky.
“It still baffles me what’s going on in this boxing industry and how I’m a part of this amazing experience.
“I’m standing here in this Tottenham Stadium and we’ve got it to ourselves. It’s mad.
“In four or five weeks there’s not going to be an empty seat in here. It’s going to be wild. I just pray I get this W.
“That’s the most important thing. I really want to win.”