Unified heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua faces former undisputed cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Usyk at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London on Saturday (DAZN, 1 p.m. ET, primary occasion at 5 p.m. ET).
Joshua (24-1, 22 KOs), 31, of Watford, England, ranked No. 2 in ESPN’s heavyweight rankings, owns the WBA, WBO and IBF world titles. His most up-to-date battle was a ninth-round TKO victory over Kubrat Pulev in December at Wembley Stadium in London.
Usyk (18-0, 13 KOs), 34, of Shypyntsi, Ukraine, unified all 4 main cruiserweight world titles by defeating Murat Gassiev within the World Boxing Tremendous Collection closing in July 2018. After defending the belts towards Tony Bellew 4 months later, Usyk moved as much as heavyweight in 2019, the place he has victories over Chazz Witherspoon and Derek Chisora.
If Joshua wins, he’ll flip his consideration to the winner of the battle between WBC champ Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder, who meet in Las Vegas on Oct. 9 for the third time. If Usyk pulls the upset, Joshua has said he’ll face Usyk once more in a rematch.
Additionally on the cardboard, Lawrence Okolie defends his WBO cruiserweight title towards Dilan Prasovic, and former tremendous middleweight champion Callum Smith goes up in weight to face Lenin Castillo in a 10-round gentle heavyweight battle.
Nick Parkinson recaps all of the motion from ringside:
Battle in progress: Campbell Hatton vs. Sonni Martinez, 6 rounds, lightweights
Smith scores KO of the yr candidate towards Castillo
Former WBC tremendous middleweight world champion Callum Smith made a profitable return with a devastating second-round knockout of Lenin Castillo.
After shedding his title to Canelo Alvarez by unanimous determination in December 2020, Smith stepped up a division in a bid to turn out to be a two-weight world champion.
Smith made fairly a press release, laying out Castillo flat on his again from a proper hand. Castillo’s legs had been left twitching by the appropriate punch and he required medical remedy for a number of minutes earlier than being carried out of the ring on a stretcher.
Smith (28-1, 20 KOs), 31, from Liverpool, who made two supper middleweight title defenses, is hoping to land a 175-pound title shot subsequent yr.
Castillo (21-4-1, 16 KOs), 33, from the Dominican Republic, took Dmitry Bivol the gap in a unanimous determination loss for the WBA gentle heavyweight world title in October 2019 however was shortly in bother towards Smith.
Marku edges Prodan for break up determination win
Florian Marku claimed his greatest profession win as he jabbed his solution to a split-decision victory over Maxim Prodan in a welterweight contest.
Marku gained by scores 97-93, 96-94, with the third choose scoring it 99-91 to Prodan. Total, it was a disciplined efficiency for Marku within the second battle on the cardboard.
Ukraine-born, Italy based mostly Prodan (19-1-1, 15 KOs), 28, was gradual to get going, and within the final spherical Marku felt so assured he would get the choice, that he was elevating in fingers in celebration.
London-based Marku (9-0-1, 6 KOs), 28, who was born in Albania, obtained loads of assist from the early arrivals on the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and he regarded as if he had scored a third-round knockdown when Prodan was left sitting on the canvas. Luckily for Prodan, it was judged to have been a slip.
Marku’s jab allowed him to regulate the early rounds, and he appeared so relaxed that he crossed his legs whereas sitting on his stool in between rounds.
Prodan, who clashed with Marku on the weigh-in on Friday, landed a flurry of blows initially of the sixth and had extra success late within the spherical regardless of Marku elevating his fingers insisting he was not damage.
Prodan was the busier man within the later rounds, together with the final spherical, however it was solely sufficient to persuade one of many three judges. The consequence gained Marku a regional welterweight title.
Ousley outpoints Baysangurov
Christopher Ousley loved a snug 10-round majority determination win over Khasan Baysangurov to edge nearer to world middleweight title competition.
The Chicago-based boxer completed Spherical Four nicely and got here out swinging with hooks within the fifth spherical.
Baysangurov (21-2, 11), 24, of Samashki, Russia, remained aggressive all through, however Ousley’s sensible boxing noticed him choose off his opponent. Ousley (12-0, 9 KOs), 30, noticed his final battle finish in a no-contest after he was judged to have landed a low blow towards Sergio Acosta Osuna in Might. He sunk to his knees in ecstasy when he heard the scores of 95-95, 97-94, 97-94 Saturday night time.
Baysangurov was overwhelmed for the primary time since Rob Brant stopped him within the 11th spherical for the WBA middleweight title in February 2019.
Nonetheless to return:
Title battle: Anthony Joshua vs. Oleksandr Usyk, 12 rounds, for Joshua’s IBF, WBA and WBO heavyweight titles
Title battle: Lawrence Okolie vs. Dilan Prasovic, 12 rounds, for Okolie’s WBO cruiserweight title