Has the idea of calling it a career even crossed the mind of former two-time heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua, in light of what happened to him when he met the incredible Oleksandr Usyk on Saturday night in London? Possibly, but not likely. Joshua has already talked about his belief that he can take revenge on Usyk, and AJ has also said he would be open to taking part in big fights with Tyson Fury and / or Deontay Wilder “without the harnesses” on the line .
And of course, Joshua has that rematch clause, which means that Usyk – who will no doubt be accommodating for a return trip with Joshua, feels like the Ukrainian southpaw is making himself even better – will have to fight him another time. But former featherweight king Naseem Hamed, who was in a somewhat similar position to Joshua back in April 2001 when he had lost a decision to Marco Antonio Barrera and had a rematch clause available, says Joshua should call it a career.
Hamed never exercised his return with Barrera, preferring to sit idle until the clause expired and then, after only participating in a relatively low-key match, retire (but never officially announce his decision). Now, speaking to the ITV Box Office, Hamed said Joshua, who he does not think is a tough batsman, should retire from the sport.
“I just think this guy is not at the level he thinks he is. I think he is in a dream world, ”Hamed said of Joshua. “You know what, I know it sounds awful, I think he should quit. Listen, I personally do not think he’s a tough puncher anyway, in this game you need to get out of jail card, you need to be able to put them away. You must be able to smash them. ”
So harsh words from Hamed, or maybe you agree – Joshua is not as good / amazing as he thinks he is? It would be a big shock if Joshua retired, this after suffering two losses and being able to avenge them both (AJ had already avenged his shock loss for Andy Ruiz and now able to at least be able to try to correct the Usyk loss). But Hamed shocked us when he stopped, pretty much in his prime or close to it, after only suffering a loss.
Joshua will no doubt have seen tapes of the Usyk fight now, and perhaps he is already formulating a plan in mind on how he will jump back again. Or maybe not. Maybe Joshua will surprise us all and walk away. However, it is incredibly doubtful that he will retire. Joshua has more to do. Hamed did the same back in the day, but Sheffield southpaw had lost fire. Joshua probably does not have that.