Anthony Joshua knocks out Kubrat Pulev, Tyson Fury fight waits in the wings

After Anthony Joshua knocked out Kubrat Pulev to retain the WBA, WBO and IBF heavyweight title belts on Saturday night, Tyson Fury said he wants to “fight next.”

Fury is the WBC champion and a potential fight between two of the top boxers in the sport would bring all the heavyweight belts together. Joshua was asked whether Fury was going to be his next opponent.

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“Whoever has got the belt, I’d love to compete with them,” Joshua said. “If that is Tyson Fury, let it be Tyson Fury.”

Eddie Hearn, Joshua’s promoter, added: “We know what we have to do starting from tomorrow: to make the Tyson Fury fight straightaway. It’s the only fight to be made in boxing. It’s the biggest fight in boxing.”

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Fury responded to Joshua in an expletive-laden Twitter message. He criticized the champion for going “around the bushes” when asked about whether he wanted to face Fury.

World Heavyweight boxing champion Britain’s Anthony Joshua lands a blow on challenger Bulgaria’s Kubrat Pulev during their Heavyweight title fight at Wembley Arena in London Saturday, Dec. 12, 2020. (Andrew Couldridge/Pool via AP)

“I want the fight, I want the fight next,” Fury said. “I’ll knock him out inside three rounds.”

Bob Arum, Fury’s promoter, added: “It looks like the stage is set for the biggest heavyweight championship fight since Ali-Frazier in 1971.”

Joshua’s fight against Pulev was stopped in the ninth round.

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The last heavyweight boxer to be undisputed champion was Lennox Lewis in 1999.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.