Ensure that your horses are properly held, because Anthony Joshua vs. Joseph Parker isn’t happening just yet.
Parker (20-0, 17 KO), who became Joshua’s mandatory with a decision over Carlos Takam and recently obliterated Solomon Haumono, is all set to take on veteran Alexander Dimitrenko (38-2, 24 KO) this October in his native Auckland. The Russian’s promoters have even put together a fancy announcement video; it’s got flames in it, so you know it’s legit.
Dimitrenko is, well, big. He’s got a three-inch height advantage and seven-inch reach advantage over Parker, but his qualifications as a worthy foe end there. He’s been soundly beaten in steps up against Eddie Chambers and Kubrat Pulev, the latter of whom knocked him out , and is just two fights removed from fighting the 2-18 Milos Dovedan.
In short, he’s a huge step back from Takam and a sort of diagonal step from Haumono. I’m not sure if he’s meant to prep Parker for some of the division’s more physically imposing figures or what, but I’d rather they not let Joshua-Parker marinate.