Anthony Joshua seems to be getting his mojo back. The former world champion has been showing signs of the Joshua of old, talking tough and brandishing impressive training regime capable of scaring the faint hearted.
But it is difficult to believe that AJ will get back to what he was and the awe he inspired 10 years ago.
After back to back defeats by Oleksandr Usyk, who took his world titles, and a less inspiring victory on points over Jermaine Franklin, followers of the sport have every reason to think that the 2012 Olympic champion has seen his best days.
However, the Nigerian-born British fighter seems to believe that he has rebounded under new trainer, Derrick James, who also handles Errol Spence Jr., Jermell Charlo, and now Ryan Garcia.
With less than a month to Joshua’s rematch with Dillian Whyte, the former champion has started talking big, boasting about his newfound form.
In a hype video by Premier Boxing Champions via Paul Magno of overtimeheroics.net, Joshua describes his new trainer as the game changer, who has brought out the beast in him.
“What Derrick does here, it’s not only the physical. It’s the fundamentals, and also this here (pointing to his head) gets pushed,” Joshua said.
The writer also highlights what Joshua told BoxingNewsED: “It was s***, but I’d been through so much. I think I’ve cleared all of that off my conscience… I felt like my body had taken so much trauma. I was sparring more cautiously. Now it’s like, ‘Let’s go motherf***er.”
“Yeah, you’re looking at another world champion. This is twelve round boxing,” said Joshua told YouTube interviewer, Antoine Speaks. “You systematically break down an opponent where they can’t handle your output. Their heart rate is spiraling out of control.
“You break their soul; you break their ribs; you break their face. Sooner or later, they’ll give up, where they’ll get knocked out. The old AJ would start at the red zone, and I’d be smart enough to pick him apart,” added Joshua via the same outlet.
How Joshua walks the talk is what fight fans are eager to see on August 12, but there are some who believe that AJ would be in the right frame to face either Deontay Wilder or Tyson Fury if he beats Whyte decisively.
“The more I can have finer performances, the more it’ll preserve my body for the time I need a defining fight. I can dispatch my opponents much easier and smarter. Is there anything wrong with that? In my opinion, no,” AJ said.