Read the pre-fight thoughts and predictions from boxing experts ahead of the heavyweight clash this weekend.
I agree that Joseph Parker is the most difficult opponent of my career so far, he’s been to the top of the mountain being an ex-WBO champion. He’s very skilful and has been in the game a long time, he’s got a bit of everything, can punch a bit and take a shot, it’s going to be a hard fight for me. We’re both going to go at it to see who is the best Joe, and that will be this Joe by stoppage.
This is the most difficult fight around because Joyce is one of those that people don’t want to fight. He’s been avoided because he’s very dangerous. He chases opponents down with his big engine, pressure, pressure, pressure and a lot of people don’t like to deal with that. But I do, I love a challenge. September 24th, Joe Joyce is going to get a good beating, he has picked the wrong fight, he thinks he can walk me down and get me out of there but he’s wrong! He’s getting smashed up because he’s a lump. He’s a nice guy, but nice guys don’t always win.
Joseph (Parker) has such ability; coordination, hand speed and power, that he could be a middleweight in a heavyweight’s body. With that type of skill he has massive potential that we are only just tapping into. This is a big challenge but I could also be one of the easiest fights of his career too. He is raising his game and it’s bringing the best out of him. He wants these big challenges, and he never takes the easy option. We know what Joyce is going to bring… pressure! He’s big, strong and has a good engine, but he’s not the quickest and his reactions are very slow. For Parker, it’s an exercise in concentration and sticking to the task.
Parker has the speed advantage and has good variety in his shots, it’s just whether or not he can keep that up for all 12 rounds of the fight. I can see the first two or three rounds of this fight being an absolute firefight. I’m a big fan of Joe Joyce in and out of the ring, he is going to make you fight in every second of every minute of every round in there. He has a granite chin but when you get hit as much as he gets hit in heavyweight boxing you can go down. I feel Parker is going to let his hands go and it’ll be a good fight to watch.
We are excited for the biggest night of Joe Joyce’s career so far, it’s bigger for him than the Olympic final and is a chance to elevate himself from the top-tier of heavyweight into the elite-tier. I think Parker is going to start quick, it’s possible when you start so quick you can make a mistake but we aren’t underestimating him. On the surface it appears that Parker’s team are underestimating Joyce but I think they know exactly what they are facing; a machine that going to come strong in the late rounds which is why they are looking to do something early. I think it will come down to concentration and the ability to deal with the pressure in the early rounds.
Joseph Parker has much more experience than Joyce, he is a veteran of 12 round fights, you could argue that it’s Joyce who is going to be tested in those later rounds. Parker is a lot faster than Joyce, more fleet-footed and he’s more experienced – he just needs to remain calm under the pressure and stick to his game plan. This is the number one contender against the number two contender. I think the winner of this fight could claim to be a proper elite fighter and one of the top two or three heavyweights in the world.
It’s a great fight and we love great fights. It’s a 50/50 although Joe Joyce probably starts as a slight favourite but it’s a fight that can go many ways. Joseph Parker is pretty much a Brit, who we’ve adopted and love working with. This fight didn’t need to happen but he wanted it to happen, as did Joyce. Parker is only 30 and we believe he can come again and become a two-time heavyweight champion of the world. But I also like Joe Joyce, he has amassed an unbeaten record against really good fighters. It is a really difficult night’s work for anybody and I think it’s going to be very, very tight.
Joe Joyce is imposing. He’s big and walks you down with a granite chin, I’ve always thought he can’t keep walking on to big punches and getting hit without being moved, but he has done. For Parker to beat Joyce he will have to fight like a small guy. Touch him down, outfox him and outbox him for 12 rounds, which is difficult for a heavyweight, especially if you’re fighting Joyce. He will have to hit him more, avoid getting hit and not be put down himself. I feel that Joyce could stop Parker in the later rounds, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Parker could outpoint him as well. They’ve both got the ability and styles to beat one other but it’s who gets it off better on the night.
It’s a great fight, a former world champion against someone who has been predicted to be a world champion. This is the hardest fight for Joe Joyce to date and the skill level of Parker is going to be something that will test Joyce. But the way that Joe (Joyce) has been acting in the gym is the best sparring we’ve had to date. The intensity, the work rate, the head movement – these are all different little facets that he has added to his game, and that’s the benefit of having back-to-back camps. From what I’ve seen it’s going to take a very special man to beat him, and if Parker does that then fair play to him because it’s not going to be easy.
Joe Joyce’s career has been really well driven and well managed right from the beginning so I’ll be really interested to see how he approaches this fight. Parker has improved under Andy Lee since he was world champion. He doesn’t seem intimidated by the big Juggernaut. I think if Joyce feels he can run him over then he will, but he also might not. He showed against (Daniel) Dubois that there is more to him than that. He is an Olympic silver medallist, but I think this might be a little bit cagier than some people are expecting to be.
I’m supporting both of them. Joe Joyce is the nicest man you’ll meet in your life and Parker is exactly the same, unfortunately for Joyce I’m backing Parker for this one. The main difference I’ve seen in Parker is the mind-set, although under Andy Lee he’s probably developed 20% more power than he had before, he moves very well around the ring and has fast reflexes. Joe Joyce is a lump, he’s 6ft 8 and 20 stone, he’s a lump and that’s a compliment. He looks a lot worse than he is because his footwork is really good and he can box. But it cannot be the plan for him to walk through heavyweight boxers because there’s no such thing as an iron chin and eventually you will get hurt.
All predictions come courtesy of iD Boxing. Watch all of their video content ahead of the fight here.