By Charles Brun: Anthony Joshua worked out with WBO cruiserweight champion Lawrence Okolie on Tuesday, focusing on mobility and throwing body shots on the inside.
Interestingly, Joshua’s trainer Rob McCracken hasn’t been seen in any of his recent video clips from Dubai. Has Joshua already cast McCracken adrift?
You would think that Joshua, out of loyalty, would keep McCracken on as the captain of his sinking ship until the bitter end.
If Usyk had any questions about what strategy Joshua will use in their rematch, all he needs to do was take one look at his workout today with Okolie to find out what his plan will be for their match next April.
AJ will be targeting Usyk’s breadbasket with a hit & run approach to the fight, with a lot of clinching to keep him from getting his punches off.
Is Joshua planning on spoiling?
It’s a spoiling game plan that is tried and true but so ugly to watch and a real turnoff for the boxing fans.
With Joshua trying desperately to save his career, I don’t think he cares one bit how ugly he makes it. He needs to win, and he’s beyond caring if it’s pretty or not.
Joshua (24-2, 22 KOs) is trying hard to come up with the winning formula to avenge his loss to Oleksandr Usyk to win back his IBF, WBA, and WBO heavyweight titles in April.
The Joshua vs. Usyk rematch is still yet to be announced by Matchroom Boxing, but it’s all but certain to be taking place in April, likely in the UK.
Joshua, 32, has already decided that he wants the second fight with the unbeaten 2012 Olympic gold medalist Usyk (19-0, 13 KOs) and activated the rematch clause months ago.
Working out with the lanky 6’5″ Okolie (17-0, 14 KOs) is an odd move by Joshua, as his size, reach, and fighting style is nothing like that of the 6’3″ Usyk.
Charles Brun couldn’t pick a more different heavyweight than Usyk for Joshua to train with if he tried.
Okolie = odd choice for Joshua
It’s just a strange choice for Joshua to work out with Okolie to prepare for the Usyk fight, but of course, AJ is frantic at this point, reaching for ANYTHING in hopes of coming up with the magic elixir that will lead him to a career-saving victory.
Anthony Joshua and Lawrence Okolie in the ring together today…
[📽️ NapperFitness & Healthy_Mindset] pic.twitter.com/K7bQHJbbdI
— Michael Benson (@MichaelBensonn) January 4, 2022
All this movement and mauling that Joshua is planning on using against Usyk could ultimately lead to his demise in the fight because to fight like that; you need stamina.
As we already know, Joshua’s gas tank is one that routinely runs out after four rounds, and sometimes even faster than that if he’s forced to fight hard.
Joshua’s decision to implement movement against Usyk is a wrong-headed plan because it can only work for fighters with the required stamina. That plan won’t work for fighters like Joshua, who are have a bodybuilder’s physique.