Anthony Joshua Vs. Deontay Wilder Who’s The Favorite? – SolSportHQ
By Vince D’Writer: Talks of a Deontay Wilder vs. Anthony Joshua clash were circulating back in 2018, but the bout never came to fruition, and now, several years later, the two former heavyweight champions seem to be finally set to face each other in Saudi Arabia early next year.
Both men experienced career setbacks, and both men have returned to the ring to get back on the winning track. The names Joshua and Wilder are still relevant in the heavyweight division, and a clash between the two former champions is a bout that’s still in public demand.
Back in April 2016, Anthony Joshua knocked out Charles Martin in the second round and won the IBF heavyweight title. After two successful title defenses, Joshua became a unified champion as he scored an 11th round TKO victory over Wladimir Klitschko, and as a result he won the WBA title belt.
A year later, Joshua added the WBO belt to his strap collection when he defeated Joseph Parker by way of unanimous decision. The British heavyweight was one belt away from becoming undisputed, but at that particular time, the final belt was in the possession of a hard-hitting American.
Deontay Wilder started his professional boxing career with 32 straight victories before receiving an opportunity to fight for a world title. When he received his chance on January 17, 2015, he capitalized by defeating Bermane Stiverne and winning the WBC belt.
As the WBC world heavyweight champion, Wilder would go on to have seven successful title defenses from June 2015 to March 2018. Wilder had a firm grip on the WBC strap, and a bout between Wilder and Joshua was the fight all boxing fans wanted to see.
Initial talks in regards to a Joshua-Wilder super fight started back in April 2018. Unfortunately, the negotiations broke down due to issues such as the money and whether or not the fight should take place in the United States or the United Kingdom.
Shortly after the failed negotiations, Joshua made a successful title defense against Alexander Povetkin, while Wilder fought to a split draw against Tyson Fury. A year later Anthony Joshua would make his U.S. debut, but unfortunately, things didn’t go according to plan.
In December 2019, Andy Ruiz Jr pulled off a massive upset when he scored a seventh round TKO victory over Anthony Joshua. Joshua would win the rematch, but he would later lose his unified title once again as he suffered back-to-back losses to Oleksandr Usyk.
Deontay Wilder would face adversity of his own in February 2020 when he lost the rematch to Tyson Fury by way of 7th round stoppage. The trilogy bout would take place in October 2021, and once again, Tyson Fury was victorious as he won by way of 11th round knockout.
Wilder would proceed to take a year off, and when he made his return, he knocked out Robert Helenius in the first round. After losing both fights to Oleksandr Usyk, Anthony Joshua made his return to the ring in April 2023, as he defeated Jermaine Franklin by unanimous decision, and four months later, he knocked out Robert Helenius in the seventh round.
Now, the two former heavyweight champions, 33-year-old Anthony Joshua (26-3, 22 KOs) and 37-year-old Deontay Wilder (43-2-1, 42 KOs), are once again on a collision course. All signs are pointing to a Joshua -Wilder clash happening sometime early next year in Saudi Arabia. With this bout on the brink of finally happening, the question is, who is the favorite?
The 6’6″ Anthony Joshua is a fundamentally sound boxer-puncher, while his potential opponent, the 6’7″ Deontay Wilder, is a pure knockout artist. Joshua is better at setting up his shots, but Wilder is more explosive as he can instantly land his powerful one-two combination.
Joshua uses a solid jab to set up his offense, and he also does a good job of setting up his shots by circling around his opponent. Wilder has a vastly improved jab that he uses to set up one of the most devastating one-two combinations in the sport of boxing.
Both Anthony Joshua and Deontay Wilder pack a powerful punch, but if you had to rate punching power, the advantage would probably go to Wilder. In his bout against Helenius, Joshua displayed his one-punch knockout ability, but Deontay Wilder has a history of getting the job done with one single punch.
Joshua and Wilder are both average when it comes to fighting off the back foot. The winner of this contest will be the boxer who is aggressive and establishes his offense by pressing forward and fighting off the front foot.
The most important asset in this potential matchup may come down to who has the strongest chin. If by chance, Deontay Wilder gets knocked down by Joshua, the odds are in favor of Wilder getting up, but if Wilder sends Joshua down to the canvas, will Anthony Joshua be able to rise to his feet?
Both former champions suffered back-to-back losses, but from a mentality standpoint, Deontay Wilder seems to be in better condition due to the fact that he carries the same brand of aggression. Prior to losing to Ruiz, Joshua was always aggressive off the front foot, but now he’s more hesitant, cautious, and prone to overthink situations while in the ring.
Back in 2018, Anthony Joshua was a slight favorite to beat Deontay Wilder. Fast forward to the present day, and now, due to the Andy Ruiz effect, Deontay Wilder should be the favorite because when you face a dangerous opponent such as Wilder, hesitation, doubt, and passive behavior could be the keys to your night coming to an abrupt end.