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‘AJ can’t be tentative against Wilder’: Boxing pros react to Anthony Joshua’s KO of Robert Helenius and what may come next

Pros give their thoughts on Anthony Joshua’s win over Robert Helenius and what a Deontay Wilder fight might look like.

Anthony Joshua vs Deontay Wilder is the talk of the Joshua-Helenius post-fight
Anthony Joshua vs Deontay Wilder is the talk of the Joshua-Helenius post-fight
Photo by Nick Potts/PA Images via Getty Images
Scott Christ is the managing editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2006.

Anthony Joshua scored a huge KO win over Robert Helenius — in that the KO was huge, not that it was unexpected or anything — and now pretty much all eyes and attention are set on a potential Joshua vs Deontay Wilder fight.

“Very similar to Hearns vs Duran knockout,” Paul Smith said. “Hearns obviously a lot better. (Joshua) needed that there. Saw a lot of bad habits — reaching for the jab, etc. — that will need tidying up for Wilder.”

Following up on the idea of Joshua vs Wilder — which Eddie Hearn says he hopes to finalize shortly — Smith added that he’s looking forward to the matchup.

“Wilder looked finished to me (in his last fight with) Fury. I wasn’t sure if it was just that he was hurt, concussed, too fatigued, or just didn’t have it getting in the ring in the first place. That’s why I’m looking forward to (Joshua vs Wilder) and will be there.”

Enzo Maccarinelli had his own thoughts on that fight, saying Joshua can’t fight like he did in this one.

“It’s heavyweight boxing, I know anything can happen, but if the Wilder fight happens, AJ can’t be tentative like that,” he said. “He has to just go for it. It’s risky strategy, yes, but he has to.”

More of what the pros had to say today:

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