Via Barry Holbrook: Carl Froch believes Anthony Joshua has a “difficult” task ahead of trying to avenge their loss to Oleksandr Usyk in their rematch on August 20 in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
Froch noted that Joshua (24-2, 22 KOs) has lacked “fire in his stomach” since his second fight with Andy Ruiz Jr in December 2019, and he’s unsure if replacing coach Rob McCracken bring back the energetic boxer that he doesn’t. was in the past.
Joshua’s new coach Robert Garcia might tell him to be aggressive, but if he’s not willing to follow his instructions for fear of getting cut or running out of gas before Usyk (19-0, 13 KOs), he might as well return to McCracken.
Froch argues that Joshua shouldn’t mind the fight if he doesn’t have an active fighting mindset because he will be defeated again if he lacks confidence.
Usyk will defend the IBF/WBA/WBO heavyweight belt against Joshua on August 20.
Joshua, 32, will be looking to fight more aggressively in the rematch than he did last time against Usyk, so we’ll likely see a lot of high-powered hits thrown from him close like immediately.
Joshua has a tough task ahead of him
“I don’t think it will come out. I think it will be difficult for Joshua to defeat Usyk in this rematch; it’s going to be very difficult unless he changes his way of thinking and his way of thinking,” Carl Froch told iFL TV about Anthony Joshua needing to change the mental game for his rematch with Oleksandr Usyk.
“His mindset needs to kick in, and he needs to start believing in himself and go into that round with all the confidence that he can and does the job. If he believes, he can achieve.
“I just think that since the loss to Ruiz, he hasn’t had that mindset and doesn’t have the mentality of a winner. He’s almost made it through the rematch with Ruiz, and I’m not impressed with the Pulev win.
“I didn’t see that fire back in his stomach. I don’t think leaving Rob McCracken, I don’t know if it was the right decision, but I hope it will be the right decision for him as it changes his mentality.
“Maybe a change is good when you have a rematch with someone like Usyk because he needs to do something different.
“Hopefully his new coach can take that away from him and put him back in his old way of thinking when he was a little more innocent and a little greener when he was fighting with Dillian Whyte and climbed into the ring with Klitschko to get it. Victory.
“That kind of mentality and that kind of tenacity where he just fights instinctively, using his size, his strength and the big shots, to let the shots happen. That’s what we need to see,” Froch said.
Oleksandr is bigger for rematch
“Usyk is a very smart kid. It is not a child,” Froch continued. “What is he, 34 years old? “He was a very clever operator, and now he looks big, he looks stronger and bigger than when he fought his first fight. I don’t know if that will be an advantage or a disadvantage. We will wait and sit. YES, Inot a difficulty for AJ. “
It might be a mistake on Usyk’s part to put too much weight as he will be slower, easier to hit and he could run out of gas against Joshua.
The last thing Usyk wants is to get tired of going up against a big boxer like Joshua and find himself able to handle his big hits.
“I’m not saying he can’t do it because he can,” said Froch. “Of course, he can. With all his attributes, he needs to get it right mentally. He needs to be on his own. If not, he may not show up either.
“If he doesn’t believe in himself, he might not even show up. If he is frustrated and annoyed by the performance, he will go up against Usyk in the first game because it was a poor performance.
“Tactically, he was wrong, and when he knew he was losing round after round, I thought he should have changed,” Froch said of Joshua. “He should have changed his game plan, and he never did.
“It is very difficult to change a pattern in a war. You have to be a very special kind of warrior to change your mind and change your tactics in battle.
“You were doing everything at the time, hopefully things would start to change for you, but obviously, he did that round after round, and ended up being outboxed and beaten. at the end of the game.
“In the 12th round, he was beaten pretty badly. He needs to apply different tactics and focus on the job. It’s very difficult to know,” Froch said when asked how Joshua could get the right tactics for the rematch against Usyk.
Does Joshua need a psychologist?
“I had a good psychologist for the rematch with George Groves,” said Froch. “He just put my mind in perspective. He taught me how to manage my emotions in a positive way.”
It can take years for a psychologist to work with Joshua to address whatever mental issues are preventing him from becoming the boxer he once was, and that may not be possible.
A psychologist wouldn’t fix Joshua’s fragile chin and low stamina, and those two problems were the main reasons he lost against Andy Ruiz Jr.
Froch said: “I watched Usyk vs Joe Joyce match on World Series of Boxing, 5, 3 minute round for those who don’t know. “I have never seen Joe Joyce get beaten up so clearly by someone, in a fight or in a fight.
“It just goes to show how good Usyk is. But Usyk aside, I think Joe Joyce is a serious threat at heavyweight. I want to see him fight the real Usyk. You never know. He can do something tactically different.
“He’s going to be the man-in-the-middle, so he definitely deserves a spot and a day’s pay. I like Joe Joyce a lot,” Froch said.
It will be interesting to see Usyk and Joe Joyce get together in 2022, ten years after both fought in the world boxing series a decade ago.
If Usyk still holds the IBF, WBA & WBO heavyweight belts after August 20, we could see him defend against Joyce if Tyson Fury chooses not to fight him.