Promoter Eddie Hearn revealed this weekend that Anthony Joshua’s fight is close to being announced for this Wednesday’s press conference on Jun 26th for AJ’s September 21st clash at Wembley Stadium in London.

Hearn smiled when asked if Daniel Dubois would be Joshua’s opponent for the September 21st date, making it clear that AJ would be battling him.

That’s potentially good news because Joshua vs. Dubois is a much bigger match than if Zhilei Zhang were the guy standing across from AJ inside the ring.

Moreover, Zhang would be a more dangerous opponent for Joshua due to his counter-punching ability, one-punch power, strong chin, and being a southpaw.

The last thing Hearn would need is for Zhang to knock out Joshua like he did Joe Joyce and Deontay Wilder, ruining his chances of fighting Tyson Fury for the big payday in 2025.

“We’re pretty close. Maybe,” said Eddie Hearn to iFL TV when asked if Anthony Joshua’s fight against Daniel Dubois will be announced this Wednesday, June 26th, for September 21st at Wembley Stadium.

Hopefully, Hearn doesn’t live to regret it if Dubois is used as Joshua’s opponent because that’s also dangerous. Dubois’s confidence from his recent wins over Filip Hrgovic and Jarrell Miller might be enough for him to outduel Joshua, who turns 35 in October and isn’t a spring chicken.

A Short but Intense Battle

“It’s going to be a short fight, but that doesn’t mean it’s an easy fight. I don’t think this goes past six,” said commentator Ade Oladipo to Secondsout about the Joshua vs. Dubois contest. “It doesn’t mean AJ doesn’t have to come through some adversity because what we’ve seen is Daniel Dubois has gotten over that hump.”

We don’t know if Joshua has it in him to defeat the young 26-year-old Dubois. Just age alone will make it difficult for Joshua to win this fight, but when you add in the confidence of Dubois, it’s not good for AJ.

Hearn has done a masterful job rebuilding Joshua with his careful match-making, feeding him four soft opponents, but that’s not true rebuilding. That’s just for marketing. Joshua was repackaged with the four ham & eggers he beat, and he’s selling well again.

True rebuilding comes from tough match-making, and we haven’t seen that yet, which is why there’s a real possibility that AJ could come unglued if he faces Dubois or Zhang on September 21st.

Joshua’s last four opponents:

  1. Francis Ngannous
  2. Otto Wallin
  3. Robert Helenius
  4. Jermaine Franklin

“Well done for [trainer] Don Charles] for helping him get over there,” said Ade. “If you look at what he’s done recently. He’s had better opposition in the ring. He’s fought his last three fights, he’s fought Oleksandr Usyk, Hrgovic, and Jarrell Miller,” Ade said about Dubois.

“AJ has fought Helenius, Otto Wallin, and Francis Ngannou. So, one [Dubois] is fighting the better boxers. So, you can’t rule out Daniel Dubois, but AJ should beat Daniel Dubois. I have AJ as the third or fourth-best heavyweight in the world.”

Joshua’s opposition in his last four fights has been the kind of starter package that you would have seen him fight when he first turned pro in 2013. He’s not fought the same opposition as Dubois has, and it’s possible that he would crumble if he had to run the gauntlet that he did against Hrgovic, Big Baby Miller and Usyk.

“He looks like he’s back now with Ben Davison,” said Ade. “That link-up looks like it’s starting to produce some good performances. He should beat Dubois, but Hrgovic should have beaten Dubois as well, and some felt that Jarrell Miller should have beaten Dubois.”

Ade doesn’t see things clearly. Joshua’s last four opponents were ones he could have glided through with any of his trainers. Ben Davison didn’t do anything that any of AJ’s past trainers couldn’t have done if they were working his corner for his last four gimme fights.

“You can never rule out Dubois. You can’t rule out confidence, and he’s extremely confident. I think AJ is also extremely confident.’

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