Anthony Joshua overcame a slow start to finish Alexander Povetkin this past weekend on DAZN from Wembley Stadium in London.
Joshua retained the WBA, IBF and WBO heavyweight titles, and the unbeaten fighter set himself up for a potential huge 2019 showdown with Deontay Wilder.
Coming off his first decision fight in 21 bouts, Joshua (22-0) made sure this one wouldn’t go that far. He landed a perfectly timed left hook and connected with a right to floor Povetkin before getting the finish in the seventh round.
“I’ve got my knockout streak back and I found my right hand again,” Joshua said (thanks to ESPN for the quotes). “Alexander Povetkin is a very tough challenge. He provided that, he was good with left hook. I realized he was strong to the head but weak to the body so I was switching it up. Every jab takes a breath out of you and I slowed him down.”
Joshua secured his sixth defense of the IBF title, third of the WBA and his first for the WBO. It was just the second loss for Povetkin in 36 fights and the first time he has been finished.
Now, Joshua sits back and can await the upcoming December 1 showdown between Wilder and Tyson Fury for Wilder’s WBC belt. That’s the only one that has yet to be secured by Joshua, who is earmarked for April for his next fight.
“I’m not too fussed who wins between them, good luck to both,” Joshua said. “The champion needs to get themselves over here to the UK and we’ll have a good dust-up. My No. 1 would be Wilder.”
If the sides cannot come to an agreement involving Joshua and the winner of Wilder-Fury, Joshua will face either Dillian Whyte or Dereck Chisora.
Joshua ended the fight having landed 90 total punches to just 47 by the challenger. Of those 37 were power shots and 53 were jabs for the champion.
In other action, Luke Campbell bested Uvan Mendy in a WBC lightweight title eliminator via decision to improve to 19-2 in his career. Lawrence Okolie, a 2016 Olympian, claimed a decision over Matty Askin to defend his British cruiserweight title and remain unbeaten at 10-0.
David Price suffered an injury that ended his bout with Sergey Kuzmin at the end of the fourth round. Kuzmin improved to 13-0 in his career, as Price fell to 22-6 overall. He admitted during the post-fight interview that the bicep injury happened earlier in practice and “at the end of the fourth round it was barely movable. It’s really frustrating.”