Not Everyone Was Blown Away By AJ

The response to the late inning whackout by Anthony Joshua at Wembley Saturday wasn’t met with universal acclaim.

Heck, what does, in this age where everyone is a publisher and therefore every sort of opinion that could be furnished after a news making event is?

Me, I thought AJ won that fight against Wladimir Klitschko in nearly as fine a fashion as he could’ve.

Think about it; if he’d smashed and trashed Wlad quick, then people would have said Wlad was ultra damaged goods.

This way, doing it late, after being knocked down and needing a second wind infusion, to me it spoke volumes.

And yes, while I noted during the event that no, we aren’t seeing a guy who will be compared to Mike Tyson, with that same reservoir of ferocity and charisma, we did see a man elevate himself two notches, someone who’ll now be gaining that all important attention from casuals.

But, for instance, Lou Dibella, who promotes PBCer Deontay Wilder, lauded the win. All due respect to AJ, Lou told me, he’s a legit young gun. “But I think my guy Wilder beats him!”

Me, I thought Wlad’s legs were lively. No, he didn’t turn into a volume crazed slaughterer. “His best asset was his guile,” opined the NY deal maker. I think maybe he would have liked to see if his Wilder could’ve finished the show midway through, as maybe AJ could have, judging by what the Twitterati doubters are saying.

“We have young and strong guys, Wilder, AJ, Joseph Parker, who have titles and we can maybe unify them with 12 months or more,” Dibella said.

Big Baby Miller, the Brooklyner who is top of the heavyweight heap in terms of personality, told me he wasn’t blown away by AJ. “I think his protein supplements worked great,” BBM said, then complimenting AJ’s ability to summon the second wind. “But there’s something missing.” So, BBM isn’t sold, didn’t see a star steeaking across the London skyline Saturday. The chin needs more testing, he said, and he, among others, he feels, could fight a 12 rounder without getting gassed like AJ. When gassed against a bomb thrower, well, that could spell the end of the unbeaten run for AJ.

Bottom line: There is no uniformity among the masses as to what AJ is. No one smacked down his showing, but not everyone thought as much of Wlad’s effort as I. Guess what? We will have to keep on fighting it out, making meaningful matches, to reach hopefully a place of consensus.

Michael Woods
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Michael Woods. Host, TALKBOX podcast, powered by EVERLAST; 1st VP, Boxing Writers Association of America; is my site