Joshua vs. Takam, The First of Consecutive Heavyweight World Title Fights On SHOWTIME, Replays TONIGHT at 10:40 p.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME; And On Sunday Morning at 10 a.m. ET/PT on SHOWTIME EXTREME
CLICK FOR PHOTOS FROM CARDIFF; Credit Esther Lin/SHOWTIME
CARDIFF, WALES (Oct. 28, 2017) – Undefeated and Unified Heavyweight World Champion Anthony Joshua stopped IBF mandatory challenger Carlos Takam in the 10th round on Saturday night at Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales, where the British sensation improved to 20 wins, all by knockout, and retained both his IBF and WBA world title belts.
Joshua vs. Takam was contested before a record 78,000 fans, the largest ever for an indoor boxing event and was the first of back-to-back heavyweight world title fights airing live on SHOWTIME. Next Saturday, Nov. 4, WBC Heavyweight World Champion Deontay Wilder headlines a three-fight telecast when he faces former world champion Bermane Stiverne at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, NY.
Creative combinations and some inside fighting rarely seen from the rangy Joshua opened up a cut over Takam’s right eye and floored the challenger in the 4th. Later, Joshua opened another gash over the left eye but a bloody and battered Takam continued to press forward. Takam was able to land some significant punches in the middle rounds but not enough to take Joshua off his game.
In the 10th, after Joshua landed several big punches including a left-right combination that rocked the courageous challenger, referee Phil Edwards stepped in and stopped the fight at 1:34.
“I kept my composure,” said Joshua when asked about a head butt in the second round that may have broken the champion’s nose. “We will get my nose cracked back into place and then we can get back to training.”
When SKY Sports’ ringside reporter Andy Scott asked the beloved champion about a unification bout with fellow undefeated champion Wilder, Joshua said, “It has to happen. It has to happen for sure. When it comes down to it, the IBF, IBO and WBA have mandatory challengers. I can’t just fight any Joe Blow I want. I have to fight the obligations as champion and once I fulfill those, my door is open to fight anyone, be it Wilder or anyone else.
“Everyone saw how hard it took to get the belts,” he continued. “I am not giving them up for anyone.”
When asked about fighting overseas in America or elsewhere, Joshua replied to the delight of the U.K. fans, “As I said, it’s not my decision what happens outside the ring… but look at what boxing is doing. We are getting people coming in from all around the U.K. and from different countries. I think we should keep on boxing right here in the U.K.”
SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING® Live At 5 p.m. ET/2 p.m. PT From Sold-Out Principality Stadium In Cardiff, Wales
Click HERE For Photos Credit Esther Lin/SHOWTIME
CARDIFF, WALES (Oct. 27, 2017) – Unified Heavyweight World Champion Anthony Joshua tipped the scales at a career-high 254 pounds and IBF mandatory challenger Carlos Takam measured 235 ½ pounds for their heavyweight showdown tomorrow on SHOWTIME.
The SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING telecast begins live at 5 p.m. ET/2 p.m. PT from sold-out Principality Stadium in Cardiff where an estimated 78,000 fans will converge for the largest indoor event in boxing history.
Joshua, who went past the 10th round for the first time with a sensational knockout of Wladimir Klitschko on April 29, promised conditioning wasn’t an issue.
“I’ve been doing a lot more running. Maybe I’m starting to fill out as I get older and I’m starting to find my natural weight,” Joshua said. “Who knows what it is. I definitely feel a lot fitter than I have in previous fights.”
The referee for Saturday’s contest is Phil Edwards and the judges scoring ringside are Michael Alexander (England), Pawel Kardyni (Poland) and Ron McNair (New York).
If Joshua’s previous 19 bouts are any indication, the judges might not be necessary.
“I’m not going to say I’m going to knock him out and smash him up and all these types of things,” said Joshua, who has knocked out all of his professional opponents en route to unifying the heavyweight division. “But that’s what I have to do.”
“He’s definitely going to take me into late waters and that’s where it’s going to be interesting.” – Anthony Joshua
“I saw Joshua go down. I saw he has a weak point.” – Carlos Takam
SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING® Live At 5 p.m. ET/2 p.m. PT From Sold-Out Principality Stadium In Cardiff, Wales
Click HERE For Photos Credit Esther Lin/SHOWTIME
CARDIFF, WALES (Oct. 26, 2017) – Unified Heavyweight World Champion Anthony Joshua and IBF mandatory challenger Carlos Takam faced off at the National Museum in Cardiff on Thursday during the final press conference for their heavyweight blockbuster this Saturdaylive on SHOWTIME from sold-out Principality Stadium.
Joshua and Takam will square off in front of an all-time indoor boxing record of 78,000 fans on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING beginning at 5 p.m. ET/2 p.m. PT in the U.S.
Joshua (19-0, 19 KOs) returns for the first time since unifying the heavyweight division via knockout in a leading Fight of the Year thriller with long-reigning kingpin Wladimir Klitschko this past April.
“We’re going to have to put that Klitschko win to the side at some stage because boxing is unforgiving,” Joshua said on Thursday. “That was that. This is now. Carlos is a completely different animal than Klitschko.
“Who knows what’s going to happen in that ring Saturday. This division is unpredictable. You saw I got tired in the fifth round against Klitschko. Am I going to find out I’m only a five round fighter? Takam is tough and can go the distance. He’s definitely going to take me into late waters and that’s where it’s going to be interesting.”
Takam (35-3-1, 27 KOs) has experience in close bouts with reigning WBO Heavyweight Champion Joseph Parker and former challenger Alexander Povetkin. The 2004 Olympian from Cameroon enters the contest having boxed more than three times the professional rounds as Joshua.
“My experience will help me win the fight,” Takam said. “I’ve been in there with a champion. When we get in the ring it’s just two fighters. Only at the end of the fight will we know who the real world champion is.
“I saw Joshua go down. I saw he has a weak point, and we’ve been working on targeting that.”
Joshua and Takam meet 24 years after Lennox Lewis and Frank Bruno squared off in the first all-British heavyweight world championship in front of more than 25,000 fans at the National Stadium in Cardiff. There will be more than 78,000 at the new National Stadium – Principality Stadium – on Saturday.
Here’s what the fighters had to say on Thursday:
“Fighting is all I do. It’s all I know. It’s an honor to be defending these belts. I don’t always like to talk about the belts because I’ve always been a fighter before that and I’ve always had the ambition of being a talented fighter before I became champion. I’m just looking forward to getting in the ring and handling business.
“We’re going to have to put that Klitschko win to the side at some stage because boxing is unforgiving. That was that. This is now. Carlos is a completely different animal than Klitschko.
“I do know that I’m willing to do whatever it takes to win. In terms of style, technique and preparation, it’s completely different. Every camp is completely different. My mindset is completely different. All will be revealed Saturday. Best of luck to both men and the best man will win.
“[Trainer Rob McCracken] has never just trained me for one style of opponent. He’s trained me to be the best me. He’s trained me to be ready, to be fit, to be focused and to adapt new skills to my boxing. No matter who my opponent is, I’ll always be in good condition to compete against any champion or any contender in the world.
“We’re in the business of providing really good fights. We’re not here to tip and tap and run for 12 rounds. We’re here to get stuck in.
“I know what it’s like to be the non-champion fighting for a championship. When there’s that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, it’s going to be competitive. This is heavyweight championship boxing. Both of us are on the same elite level so you’re going to see an elite fight.
“Who knows what’s going to happen in that ring Saturday. This division is unpredictable. You saw I got tired in the fifth round against Klitschko. Am I going to find out I’m only a five round fighter? Takam is tough and can go the distance. He’s definitely going to take me into late waters and that’s where it’s going to be interesting.
“With [Takam’s] style and his strength, I wish I came into this fight heavier so we could just stand there and slug it out with each other. Why’d I come in lighter? I thought I was fighting Pulev – a real amateur-style boxer. I had to stay off the line, jab with him and match his speed. Takam is a completely different style of fighter so I might have come in a bit heavier if I knew I was fighting Takam.
“I’m just a reflection of hard work. The UK boxing scene is quite grassroots. I still go to my amateur club. Just before this championship fight, I was training with all the amateurs – kids that were just 10 years-old. You can only achieve what you see, so when they’re training with Olympians and professional World Champions, they’re inspired. That’s real nice to be the champion and still keep it real training with the grassroots athletes.”
“My experience will help me win the fight. I’ve been in there with a champion. When we get in the ring it’s just two fighters. Only at the end of the fight will we know who the real world champion is.
“I saw Joshua go down. I saw he has a weak point, and we’ve been working on targeting that.”
“I’m going to box my way. I’m going to come forward, fight my fight.
“I believe in myself. I’m confined. It wouldn’t be a shock if I won because of the confidence I have.
“When I heard about the fight, I was already in preparation for another fight so I had to completely change the way I trained to be ready for this fight. I’m coming out on the 28th to win the fight.
“All I can do is invite you to see the outcome of the fight on the 28th. I’m coming out to win.
“I know it’s going to be a great fight. This will change my life in boxing but not from the person I am.”
Unified Champion Joshua Defends On SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING® Live At 5 p.m. ET / 2 p.m. PT From Principality Stadium In Cardiff, Wales
Click HERE For Photos; Credit Esther Lin/SHOWTIME
CARDIFF, WALES (Oct. 25, 2017) – Unified Heavyweight World Champion Anthony Joshua and IBF mandatory challenger Carlos Takam worked out in front of approximately 1,400 fans on Wednesday at St. David’s Hall in Cardiff, just three days before they square off this Saturday live on SHOWTIME.
The near-capacity crowd at the National Concert Hall of Wales serves as a prelude to the record-breaking audience expected at Principality Stadium on Saturday where more than 75,000 fans will set boxing’s all-time indoor attendance record at the retractable roof facility.
The SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING telecast begins live at 5 p.m. ET/2 p.m. PT from ringside in Cardiff as Joshua (19-0, 19 KOs) returns for the first time since unifying the heavyweight division. The undefeated British sensation picked up the WBA belt to go along with his IBF crown on April 29 in a leading Fight of the Year thriller with Wladimir Klitschko.
“We’re going to have a war. We’re going to wear our hearts on our sleeves,” Joshua said. “This is what fighting’s about. With me, it ain’t about all this other stuff that goes on outside the ring. When people come to watch me box, they know they’re going to have a good time. They know they’re going to see knockouts.”
Takam (35-3-1, 27 KOs), a 2004 Olympian from Cameroon, packs a lengthy resume as he looks to shock the world and become heavyweight champion.
“He’s a world champion, he’s earned his belt,” said the 36-year-old Takam. “But I’m coming here to take it.”
Joshua vs. Takam is the first of two consecutive heavyweight world bouts on SHOWTIME. Next Saturday, Nov. 4, WBC Heavyweight World Champion Deontay Wilder will defend his title in a rematch with Bermane Stiverne, the only opponent to last the distance with the American champion in 38 professional bouts.
Here’s what the fighters had to say on Wednesday:
“I’ve never been nervous about fighting but I think this stadium is going to be different. There’s a closed roof. I know the energy and the atmosphere is going to be bouncing up and down off the roof and it’s going to be nothing like before. As I said, if Saturday night is a little bit like the people today here at the public workout, it’s going to be phenomenal.
“This is what fighting’s about – different styles and different types of opponents. But the best opponent you can work on is yourself so I’ve definitely been improving myself. I can talk about a million things I’ve been working on but at the end of the day, as soon as that first bell rings, that’s when it matters.
“We’re going to have a war. We’re going to wear our hearts on our sleeves. This is what fighting’s about. With me, it ain’t about all this other stuff that goes on outside the ring. When people come to watch me box, they know they’re going to have a good time. They know they’re going to see knockouts. They’re going to see a bit of blood and a bit of respect after.
“I think the UK has been sending a statement for a long time. It wasn’t so long ago that U.K. heavyweights or boxers weren’t getting a look. Now, all the Americans are talking about U.K. fighters. We’ve definitely been sending a statement over to the States for a long time.
“[Joseph Parker and Deontay Wilder] can watch me a million times but it’s so different when you get in these ropes. When you get in here, you can watch somebody a million times, but it’s a different challenge when you face someone face-to-face.
“We have to deliver. The fans know what they want, I know what they want. It’s my job to deliver. I haven’t got to say it – I know already and the fans know. Let’s just deliver Saturday night and we’ll look forward to a promising 2018.”
On opponent Takam, who became the mandatory challenger after an injury to Kubrat Pulev:
“First and foremost, massive credit to Eddie [Hearn] because he’s done amazing work. He was ahead of the game and he’s managed to allow this show to go ahead. Credit to Carlos Takam, a true athlete who stays fit all year round. He’s not someone who just trains for a fight, he seems to keep himself conditioned and that’s what we like. He’s the same as myself. And I think – what would I do? Would I give up the IBF belt? Hell no. I worked too hard for it.”
“I’m ready for this fight, I’m ready for everything he has. I’ve been waiting for this opportunity for a long time. We were in the gym getting ready, hoping we would get this chance.
“He’s a world champion, he’s earned his belt. But I’m coming here to take it. You have to defend your title, and I’m not going to make it easy. I’m going to make this the fight of the year.
“If I can do things differently from what other boxers have done against him, I’ll have a chance to win by knockout.
“A lot of people have asked me if I see any weaknesses in Joshua’s style. All I can say is we will see on fight night.
“I’m not bothered about fighting in front of 80,000 people, the only people in the ring will be myself and Joshua, nothing else matters except us.”
An Examination Of Joshua’s Career Progression Toward Heavyweight Championship & Unification Written and Narrated By Steve Farhood
Anthony Joshua vs. Carlos Takam | Saturday, Oct. 28
Live on SHOWTIME® At 5 p.m. ET / 2 p.m. PT
Photo Credit: Esther Lin/SHOWTIME
WHAT: International Boxing Hall of Famer and historian Steve Farhood examines the career of Unified Heavyweight World Champion Anthony Joshua in advance of his title defense against IBF mandatory challenger Carlos Takam on Saturday, Oct. 28live on SHOWTIME from Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales.
In the latest edition of the SHOWTIME Sports® digital series “Ring Resume,” Farhood takes an in-depth look at Joshua’s career beginning with his 2015 showdown with then-unbeaten Gary Cornish. The six-fight examination culminates with his career-defining win over Wladimir Klitschko to unify the division earlier this year.
The Oct. 28 SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING® telecast begins live at 5 p.m. ET/2 p.m. PT with ringside analysis in Cardiff where nearly 80,000 fans are expected to fill the Welsh national stadium.
Unified and undefeated heavyweight Champion Anthony Joshua spoke to members of the media on a SHOWTIME-hosted conference call to discuss his upcoming title defense against IBF mandatory challenger Carlos Takam. The fight will be televised LIVE on SHOWTIME at 5 p.m. ET/2 p.m. PT from Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales.
The British sensation Joshua (19-0, 19 KOs) and Takam (35-3-1, 27 KOs) will meet in front of what is expected to be more than 70,000 boxing at Welsh’s national stadium.
Here is what Joshua had to say on the call:
“We’re back again October 28 against Carlos Takam. I could say a million things about Takam because I’m studying him. At the end of the day, there’s two things that I’m focusing on. One is that it’s just like another fight and the second is winning. Then we can all move on to see what 2018 holds. I’m sure that’s going to be a promising year.”
On his viewpoint of how he felt when opponent was changed from Kubrat Pulev to Carlos Takam:
“I was a bit baffled. You know how it is when you’re a fighter, you say ‘I’m going to fight with one arm, one eye, one leg.’ I didn’t expect him to stand down the opportunity but I do understand that he wanted to be 100 percent. Nowadays, there’s a lot of science to the sport so he probably had to get advice from his doctors, so I get it. But it’s a shame because there was just something about Pulev and wanting to outclass him. My mindset with Takam…I don’t know. He’s veteran where you take a lot to give a lot. It’s just switching up my mindset about the style of fight I’m going to engage in now. That was the main disappointment.”
On his thoughts about some point fighting in the U.S.:
“I’m excited. I’m very excited. I would love to fight the great champions that the United States has produced. At the same time, I’ll fight anywhere. I’m fine staying in the UK, but America’s definitely at the top of the pyramid for sure. The thing is, before I wanted to go out there for the experience but now I want to go out there and make me some money. For what fight, that’s what’s going to be interesting.”
On if he foresees a showdown with Deontay Wilder in 2018:
“Anytime. I think so. I think he’s what the division needs and I think this is what Wilder needs, so we’ll give it to them. I say it’s definitely a potential for 2018. What else am I going to do in 2018 provided that I don’t have any mandatories? I’ll be a free agent. If dealt with right with Eddie Hearn and the U.S., I think it could be built to be something just like the Klitschko fight. It should be better.”
On if he foresees the Wilder fight being in the U.S.:
“I think so. I could tell you a million things but the reason I’m saying that is because I do have some real professional people in the background advising me as well. I can see it happening in the U.S. If you came to Wembley on April 29, you saw what that was like. It was phenomenal. That was really good. So do we want to create that again or should we go overseas and do something new? It’s good to have options.”
On the timeline of events and mindset after Takam was announced as the replacement for Pulev:
“There was no doubt in my mind that I would still fight. If Eddie had opponents lined up, I was definitely still going to fight. There was no point in my mind where I thought that I’m not going to compete or didn’t know what I was going to do. A real bonus is that I always work on myself in the gym so I haven’t had like 100 Pulev clones coming to the gym. I haven’t been working just solely on the style to defeat Pulev. I’ve been working on improving on my weaknesses and building on my strengths. So, when I heard I wasn’t going to be fighting him and that the next guy in line was Takam, it was like OK, cool, because I’ve still been developing myself anyways.
“You could put me with anyone. What I’ve worked on in the gym and what I’ve built myself two of these last three months, I should be able to fight anyone. I’m just happy that I don’t have to wait because it probably would have been March or April. That would have been a year out of the ring. I don’t think now is the time to be taking that much time out so I’m really grateful that the show could still go on.”
On if from a fighter’s perspective there’s financial pressure involved in whether or not the show should go on regardless of the replacement:
“No. When I look at Pulev. He was getting the pay day. He had to make the decision. From a fighter’s point of view, you have to put the fighter first. From a second point of view, I don’t want to take the opportunity from a lot of my friends on the undercard because they’re not going to make their money. Then you’ve got to think of the fans as well because there’s so many people that book hotels, travel, time off work. Before I think of myself, I think of all these other people that have come out to have a good time and are dependent on me. So that’s why I said I’m really happy that the show could go on, not just for me. A lot of people would have lost out that night.”
On his reaction to Deontay Wilder claiming nobody wants to fight him after Luis Ortiz pulled out:
“[Laughing] When I heard Pulev pulled out, I was going to do the same thing. I thought that’s what the champions are doing these days. I find it funny. It’s like Twitter fingers now. Like doing your business behind closed doors. Ortiz failed a drug test, so be it, move onto the next one. Ortiz comes off his ban and you box him then. No need to cry about it and say that nobody wants to fight you. Of course we want to fight you, you’re the champion. You’re the hunted. He just needs to start thinking that way and stop feeling sorry for himself. Just keep quiet and don’t show any weakness in this game. This is heavyweight boxing. This ain’t featherweight boxing.”
On why he thinks Deontay Wilder needs a potential heavyweight showdown more than he does:
“I fought Jason Gavern in maybe my 12th fight. Deontay Wilder is fighting in his 34th fight maybe his 35th fight. Where I’m coming from is that in a career, it’s all good going undefeated and looking good. But when it’s all said and done, how are people going to remember you? He hasn’t had any memorable fights. He needs a real remarkable fight to stamp his name in the history books of heavyweight boxing. He needs that more right now. Especially being in America. This is the mecca of boxing. I even need it. I need Wilder to have a remarkable fight. I need to be the one that steps up to make this dream a reality. I would be honored to go out there and compete with Wilder.”
On what he’s learned from almost being defeated by Klitschko:
“Now when I watch boxing, I watch it completely different. When you watch a George Foreman and Ron Lyle kind of fight or an Ali and Foreman fight where a bit of their soul and spirit disappears, I always wondered how they were doing it and how they were taking those shots. You always question how, why, and what makes people do what they do. Until I went through it, I would always watch boxing but now I don’t just watch it, I understand it. I know the thing that you can’t be taught is how to survive in the trenches. I just feel like my heart is very big and I wear it on my sleeve in this sport.
“It’s just that mindset. I’m willing to do whatever it takes to win, that’s one thing. I just realized as well what the division needs because I think the masses of people can relate to a boxer’s life. It’s labor, you’re up early, working, you’re resting and providing for your family. There’s also the glitz and glamor of getting money but that disconnects from so many people. The wealthy people are one percent of the world, so people just want to see you fight. They want to see you go to war. That’s another thing I’ve learned…what people want and desire for in this sport to kind of bring the attention back to boxing. I don’t just do it, I don’t just watch it, I really understand it. I know what to do to deliver.”
On if he thinks he’s the biggest attraction in boxing and comfortable with shouldering that responsibility:
“I’m going to keep it humble because there’s still people in this sport that I look up to. I love Kovalev, I love Alexander Ustinov. From a talent perspective, I don’t know if I’m as talented, but I hustle the smartest. I work the hardest. You can’t deny that. We’re all carrying this weight. Even promoters are carrying this weight it’s not just me. We all have different attributes.”
On the challenges Takam presents as compared to Pulev:
“To have a style like Takam’s, not a lot of people have long careers. He just eats up a little bit of ground each round. He could throw a jab, right hand to the head, left hook, right hook and be looking good and all of a sudden, everything he’s doing wasn’t working because the person you’re fighting is still coming. So, I think by round six, seven or eight he starts applying pressure because he’s got that type of fighter with the ‘I’m going to absorb and measure everything you do’ mindset which is a dangerous style.
“I’ve fought Breazeale, Molina, and Klitschko and for Kubrat Pulev I’ve focused on a lot of taller fighters. They say Carlos Takam fights at 6-foot-2, but he probably fights at 6-foot bent down and crouched over. All in all, what goes down in the history books is whether I win or lose. I just got to do whatever I got to do to get this win. Because it’s really important for me and the sport of boxing because it sets up several fights in the future.”
On if the fight with Takam is tougher than what Pulev would have presented:
“I think he’s tougher and can take more but I don’t think he’s smarter for that reason. What’s going to be tougher…the smarter fighter who’s going to make me think more or the guy who’s going to make me run? That’s what’s going to be interesting. I think I definitely might see him in the future.”
On being compared to Lennox Lewis:
“It’s an honor at this stage. I’m going to do some research and see where Lennox was at in terms of career building going into his 20th fight. I feel like Lennox is definitely someone I can learn from. If you gave me a list of boxers I could learn from, I would put Lennox in my top 10, 100 percent. If I can perfect that jab. This is what we’re doing, this is the journey we’re on. It’s interesting because either you’re the next Lennox or the next Tyson or you’re nobody in boxing. It’s a tough sport so if I can be compared to these legends of the game, we’re definitely moving in the right direction. I’m not here calling myself the next Lennox. This is what I’m hearing. But we’re moving in the right direction.
On if he’s spent any time around Lennox Lewis and if he’s made any comments on his career:
“I was around Lennox when I was trying to make the decision about turning professional. Lennox gave me advice more about career building. So I went through Matchroom, who’s done that for a long time. After that, I kind of locked myself away and have just been focusing on my fight game. If there’s any advice I could take from Lennox it would be for my fight game because I do need to develop skills for sure.”
On if there’s a timetable to unify the title and if so does Deontay Wilder need to have a great fight to build the hype:
“There’s no time scale. You kind of just roll with the punches. We were fighting for the British title and then the Charles Martin opportunity presented itself. Then the Klitschko fight presented itself. And now we have a mandatory and you have to take that so we’re rolling with the punches, but there’s opportunities above him in the background. Deontay Wilder doesn’t need a better performance to compete. He’s a heavyweight, he’s a champion. He’s winning and that speaks enough. We have to give credit where credit is due so if that’s the case, that will definitely be respected for sure.”
On if Deontay Wilder is a priority:
“That guy’s been a professional since 2009. I started boxing in 2008. He’s been a professional a year longer than I’ve been boxing my whole career. He needs these fights. It’s a different ballgame. The only thing that’s given me credibility is the fact that I’ve gone and unified the division. He doesn’t need to have a remarkable performance or fight any household name because he’s been doing this for so long.
“I think the reason why he’s more desperate is because boxing writers have called him out. Who’s the next person on the list? Attach your name to the best brand in the business and people will listen so he’s just calling me out because he knows I’m the hot take in the business right now. He’s just doing what any businessman would do. I look at my situation and say after this Takam situation, what does the WBA say about a mandatory situation? Only God knows what could happen with my situation. I always look at it from a realistic point of view.
“I’ll fight Wilder next year and make it a priority 100 percent. There’s no doubt about that. But I’m going to be real and say these are the reasons why he’s probably doing what he’s doing. It could potentially happen but maybe not the next fight I have because of certain mandatories. Or do I just say I’m going to give up my belt because it’s what he wants or what I want? We have to make a careful decision in the making of this fight.”
EDDIE HEARN, Joshua’s Promotor, Matchroom Boxing
“We’re just over a week away from another huge event as Stephen [Espinoza] said. Seventy-five thousand people at the biggest indoor boxing event in Europe of all time. It’s going to be an incredible atmosphere and just a wonderful night of boxing. I think with Floyd’s [Mayweather] departure from the sport, he is unquestionably the biggest star in the world of boxing. The amount of interest in him has been incredible. We will of course thank SHOWTIME after the sixth episode of Anthony Joshua’s world championship career. Thank you to Stephen and all the guys at SHOWTIME and their effort. It’s extremely valued for myself and Anthony. And for the fight next week, Carlos Takam replaces Pulev. Anthony’s been training for a 6-foot-5, full-ranging awkward guy and now we have a 6-foot-2 little guy who’s going to come at you non-stop. Jabbing, punching, overhand right, hook, relentless pressure. He’s going to come across Anthony Joshua looking absolutely the best he’s ever looked in camp. We can’t wait for a wonderful show.”
On his desires to bring Anthony Joshua to the U.S. to defend the heavyweight title:
“He’s definitely on the radar. Like Anthony said, it’s definitely part of the scrapbook to be produced in the years to come. If you want to try and change the game and break down boundaries, that includes America, Africa and the Middle East as well. It’s hard to leave the UK with 75,000 to 90,000 people compared to what the U.S. is. But Anthony Joshua is a global brand. He’s not British heavyweight champion, he’s a world heavyweight champion. The key now is to get the win on October 28 and then in the weeks that follow, put our plans together for 2019 and hopefully America is included in that.”
On if working with Danny Jacobs changes his work with Joshua and if he anticipates Joshua staying on SHOWTIME despite Deontay Wilder’s connection to the network:
“Absolutely. We appreciate the way they’re building Anthony Joshua’s brand. Matchroom Boxing is one business and Anthony Joshua is another business. Anthony has involvement in our U.S. business as well. Ultimately, this is the channel that he fights on. He’s not dependent on Matchroom Boxing USA. We’ll do the right thing for Anthony.”
STEPHEN ESPINOZA, Executive Vice President & General Manager, SHOWTIME Sports
“This will be the fifth Anthony Joshua fight that will be telecast on SHOWTIME here in the states. We’re very proud of our association with A.J. and with Matchroom and it is part of giving fans the biggest fights and the best fighters. A.J. definitely fits that criteria. He is without a doubt the consensus No. 1 heavyweight in the world. We last saw him in April in a thrilling, career-defining fight and knockout of Wladimir Klitschko in front of a record crowd of 90,000 people. That fight was broadcast in over 150 countries, including live in the U.S. on SHOWTIME. On Oct. 28 we expect another spectacle of similar scale. He’s got an experienced challenger and we expect a rabid crowd of 70,000 and we are proud to bring it you on SHOWTIME starting live at 5 p.m. Eastern and 2 p.m. Pacific.
“I can’t afford to lose, and I don’t want to lose.” – Anthony Joshua
Click HERE For Photos; Credit Mark Robinson/Matchroom Boxing
Unified Heavyweight World Champion Anthony Joshua worked out for the media on Tuesday in Sheffield, England, as the undefeated British sensation continues preparation for his showdown against IBF mandatory challenger Carlos Takam on Saturday, Oct. 28at 5 p.m. ET/2 p.m. PT live on SHOWTIME from Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales.
“This is a must-win for myself and for Carlos Takam,” Joshua told Sky Sports, which will present the fight in the United Kingdom on Sky Sports Box Office. “As much as my supporters want to see me win, there are still a few people who doubt me and want me to lose and disrupt our plan. They don’t want to see the cream rise to the top.”
Joshua (19-0, 19 KOs) is not taking Takam (35-3-1, 27 KOs) lightly, and said he feels added pressure taking on a new opponent on short notice as Takam replaces the injured Kubrat Pulev.
“Twenty wins, 20 knockouts ain’t bad, but boxing’s unforgiving. So don’t ask me what you do for your 21st fight,” Joshua said. “I can’t afford to lose, and I don’t want to lose.
“Boxing is a sport that’s unforgiving in a sense that if Takam beats me, that loss will stay on my record for a lifetime. That will always be my legacy. It will not be, ‘Oh, he was a world champion, and he did well for the sport of boxing.’ No, no, no, no no. It would be, ‘He’s 19-1.’ That’s the new legacy and I just don’t want that blemish on my record right now.
“I’ve known about Carlos Takam for a long time and he’s a very, very well-rounded fighter. He’s been moving his way up the IBF rankings, so I’ve always had my eye on him anyway.
“I think Eddie did a great job to have someone in place in case these mishaps happen. And when I heard the news I was fighting Takam, of all people, he’s a very strong, game fighter. This is his chance to kind of shock the world.
“Takam is already as tough as they come. He’s so tough. He just keeps on walking forward, and that’s disheartening for a fighter.
“When I’m in there with him, it will be interesting to see how game and ready he is, and what fire he is ready to go through.”
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IBF install Frenchman as mandatory for October 28 showdown
Carlos Takam has replaced Kubrat Pulev as the IBF mandatory challenger for Anthony Joshua at Principality Stadium in Cardiff on October 28, live on Sky Sports Box Office.
Frenchman Takam is rated at number three with the governing body and has been on the hunt for a showdown with the British star, and gets his golden chance at ripping away Joshua’s titles in the Welsh capital after Pulev picked up a shoulder injury in sparring.
“I received a call from Kalle Sauerland late afternoon to inform me that Pulev had injured his shoulder and maybe ruled out of the fight – this was later confirmed by his doctor,” said promoter Eddie Hearn. “IBF rules state that the mandatory will go to the next fighter in line which is Carlos Takam.
“When the Pulev fight was announced I made a deal with Takam’s team to begin camp and be on standby for this fight. When I called them this evening they were overjoyed and good to go. It’s a difficult position for AJ having prepared meticulously for the style and height of Pulev, he now faces a completely different style and challenge in Takam – this hasn’t happened in his career before but he is ready for all comers on October 28.”
Joshua’s clash with Takam is part of a huge night of action in Cardiff where the 2012 London Olympic Gold medal man’s bitter foe Dillian Whyte aims to take a giant step to his first World title shot by facing Robert Helenius for the WBC Silver strap.
Kal Yafai defends his WBA Wold Super-Flyweight title against Japanese mandatory challenger Sho Ishida and Irish sensation Katie Taylor challenges for her first World title as she takes on two-weight World champion Anahi Esther Sanchez for the WBA Lightweight crown.
There’s a mouth-watering British and Commonwealth Light-Heavyweight battle between Frank Buglioni, Lenroy Thomas and Dave Allen rematch for the Commonwealth Heavyweight title and Team GB Olympian and Welsh talent Joe Cordina appears in his fifth pro outing.
A limited number of tickets remain on sale via www.StubHub.co.uk.
Accessibility, ambulant and wheelchair tickets – please contact the Principality stadium via 02920 822432 – also on sale from midday Tuesday.
Official hospitality packages are available to purchase directly from Principality Stadium Experience. Both private suite and premium lounge packages are available to purchase, with prices starting from £450 per person + VAT. For further information please call the team on 02920 822 413.
Official Travel & Hospitality packages are also available via Sportsworld via www.sportsworld.co.uk or by calling 0208 9712966
Please ensure you plan your travel into the city before purchasing your tickets and allow plenty of time for additional security checks at the venue – please visit http://www.