Eddie Hearn says boxing fans are ‘MAD’ to make Deontay Wilder favourite in Anthony Joshua fight as talks are confirmed
EDDIE HEARN reckons boxing fans are “MAD” to have Deontay Wilder as the favourite for his proposed showdown with Anthony Joshua.
A December dust-up between the pair is understood to be in the works – nearly five years after they were first on course to face one another.
Joshua’s display in his return to the win column against Jermaine Franklin earlier this month – his first outing since back-to-back defeats to Oleksandr Usyk – has done little to convince fans he’d get the better of Wilder
But the notion of Joshua having no chance of beating the former WBC heavyweight champion has baffled Hearn, who told ESBR Boxing: “He’s boxed everybody that he’s been asked to box.
“And now it’s a fight to “avoid” against Deontay Wilder.
“If you think ‘AJ’ is an underdog in that fight, in my opinion, you’re mad.”
Wilder returned to the win column last October with a brutal first-round knockout of former sparring partner Robert Helenius.
And Hearn believes the Bronze Bomber is still very much a force to be reckoned with in the division.
The Matchroom Boxing chief said: “Wilder’s very dangerous. AJ will box his ears off.
“But if he gets caught – like anyone else in the division – he could get stopped.
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“But if he hits Wilder on the chin, he’s knocking him clean out.”
Joshua, 33, has gone on record with his eagerness to finally settle the score with Wilder – whose sole losses have come at the hands of Tyson Fury.
And Hearn believes their dust-up will be one of the “greatest fights” in recent heavyweight history.
He said: “It’s just one of the greatest fights in boxing. Do you want to see the most exciting fights? Because they come with a bit of risk.
“So let’s roll the dice and see ‘AJ’ put it on the line in a massive fight.”
Joshua is confident the mouthwatering showdown will come to fruition, saying: “From my experiences with Saudi, if they say they are going to do something, they are more than likely going to do it.
“So, that’s one end of it.
“And then you let the other guys do what they do. But as the man behind the scenes, it is important to start getting ready.
“In terms of it getting delivered, I honestly believe it is 95 per cent there.’
“He is good, I respect him, I don’t undermine him. That will make me raise my game.
“I respect what he has done and what he has done in this division.
“It is hard to become a champion, and he did it, so I have to respect that.”