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Published On: Tue, Oct 10th, 2017

Larry Holmes: Joshua Should Face Wilder in UK – Not in America

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Larry Holmes has warned Anthony Joshua and Eddie Hearn to abandon plans to fight Deontay Wilder in Las Vegas and to instead bring the American to the United Kingdom.

Joshua(19-0, 19 KOs)  and his promoter have discussed fighting the WBC heavyweight champion, and most likely in Vegas, in his coming match-ups after he defends his IBF, IBO and WBA titles against Kubrat Pulev in Cardiff on October 28.

Beyond even his stoppage of Wladimir Klitschko, a fight with Wilder (38-0, 37 KOs) in the United States – in the tradition of significant British-American match-ups such as Frank Bruno-Mike Tyson and Lennox Lewis-Evander Holyfield – could prove Joshua’s defining night.

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It could also attract the biggest purse of his career, but Holmes – one of the finest heavyweights in history – is not convinced about its appeal in the United States.

Since the retirements of Tyson and Lewis, few heavyweight fights have felt significant in the US, where match-ups in the lighter divisions have been the most popular.

For Joshua-Wilder to be a commercial success, Holmes believes the bout needs to be in England, where in April a post-war record British boxing crowd of 90,000 saw Joshua defeat Klitschko at Wembley Stadium.

“If it’s in England, it would blow the roof off the top of it,” said Holmes.

“If you’re the best, beat the best. If you’re the best, you fight who they’ll pay you for. You fight down the line: (challenger) one, (challenger) two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10.

“Kick everybody’s butt they’ll put in the ring. His manager’s supposed to be able to do that.

“But if it’s in America, it’s a great fight, but the people won’t turn out like they would do here. As far as I see.

“People are going to be watching him, lining him up.”

Wilder is back on November 4, when he faces mandatory challenger Bermane Stiverne in Brooklyn, New York.

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