Anthony Joshua got a bit of a stiffer than expected test over the weekend, but he was able to make it through some big shots to force a seventh round TKO. Joshua, 26, is a fast rising prospect in the heavyweight division, a division that's pretty thin, but at least one person doesn't believe he's ready for the cream of the crop.
That person would be Peter Fury, trainer of heavyweight champion Tyson Fury. Although Joshua's name is already being linked to likes of David Haye, Deontay Wilder, and Tyson Fury, Peter Fury thinks Joshua is need of a few more years of seasoning before he's ready to compete at that level. Speaking on Joshua's most recent performance over the weekend, Fury offered this assessment of Joshua:
"Anthony Joshua did well, but again he's boxed no-one and Dillian Whyte was his first live opponent," Fury exclusively told World Boxing News.
"Dillian came to fight back and proved Joshua is nowhere near the level he's ranked. That's not being critical or biased because he's now had 15 fights and is still learning the trade."
Although Joshua does only have fifteen professional fights under his belt, he mostly looks the part of a legitimate contender in a division that doesn't have many to look forward to. So it's probably to be expected that fans would like to see him in with the bigger names sooner than later. Fury, though, believes that Joshua still needs significant time to develop.
"I'm sure his promoter Eddie Hearn will guide him correctly and not rush him, but in my own opinion, Joshua is at least three years away from world platforms."
I, for one, truly hope Joshua isn't three years away from the upper echelon. While he shouldn't be rushed in his progression, he also shouldn't be held back just due to his number of professional fights. And lets be honest, are there really three years worth of heavyweight title fights that's going to satiate you before Joshua gets a crack? Joshua should probably should be pushed ahead at the pace his talent dictates and, at least to me, with some flaws or not, Joshua should be fighting one of the top three guys by the end of 2016.