At long last, we have a fight.
A bout originally set for late July is on the doorstep. And although we’ve had to wait for a second serving of Anthony Joshua vs Oleksandr Usyk, it could very well be worth the wait.
The Jeddah Superdome in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia will play host to the encore.
In the first fight, Usyk conquered Joshua on the scorecards. In doing so, he became the world heavyweight champion. The upset guaranteed a rematch, and that is precisely what we will get.
Here’s a deeper look at one of the biggest boxing matches of the year.
All Usyk vs Joshua odds are courtesy of Caesars and current as of Wednesday, Aug. 17, at 9 p.m. ET.
Usyk vs Joshua Tale of the Tape
There wasn’t anything controversial about the first fight at Tottenham Stadium. Usyk (19-0-0) was the better fighter, and the scorecards (117-111, 116-112, 115-113) showed it.
Concerns about Usyk’s weight against Joshua (24-2-0), who was considerably larger, were answered. And although Joshua closed around a -270 favorite, Usyk was the more dominant fighter. Each boxer took damage during the fight, but Usyk was the fresher fighter at the end and a clear winner.
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Given his rise to heavyweight, perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised. The former cruiserweight has sized up over the past few years, and the results have been significant. After assuming the role of underdog for the first bout, Usyk is now a sizable chalk against a boxer who was sizing up a fight with Tyson Fury not long ago.
The winner of this fight could make a case for that fight, although Fury says he’s done. We shall see.
Make no mistake about it; the first fight wasn’t a fluke. The decision wasn’t controversial. Joshua got beat by a fighter who simply looked more skilled and polished.
Usyk vs Joshua Predictions
Is there any reason to believe this fight will go differently?
With a fighter as talented as Joshua, one simply can’t count it out.
The addition of talented trainer Robert Garcia to Joshua’s corner is also noteworthy. Garica, who has worked with some of the best fighters in the world, was brought in to help refine Joshua’s game. While he has the power, he was unable to tap into it in the last fight. Together, they are hoping to change that.
This still, however, doesn’t feel like it will be enough. Usyk is likely to be even more comfortable at the division after the last fight. He will also likely be even bigger, although still undersized compared to Joshua.
To me, it doesn’t matter. Usyk has an Olympic boxing pedigree, and it was simply too much last time out. While I expect Joshua to lean on his opponent to take advantage of his weight even more, I don’t think it will be enough.
Now a favorite, Usyk delivers once again.
Usyk vs Joshua Pick: Usyk by Decision
Power isn’t Usyk’s game. That’s not a bad thing.
Expect more of the same from what we saw last time: smart fighting from a smaller fighter.
Usyk wins with the scorecards once again.
Usyk vs Joshua Best Bets
Usyk Moneyline (-210) at Caesars Sportsbook
Wager: 1 Unit
As stated above, the first result didn’t look or feel like an outlier. Usyk was clearly more polished than Joshua, and I don’t think time away will help Joshua solve this conundrum.
Usyk By Decision or Technical Decision (+160) at Caesars Sportsbook
Wager: 1 Unit
We’re doubling up on a trip to the potential scorecards, and we’re getting some more value along the way. Usyk puts on another clinic for the cash.
Over 10.5 Rounds (-140) at Caesars Sportsbook
Wager: 1 Unit
Let’s stay consistent with our strategy. While there is plenty of power in this fight, there is also plenty of skill. I see this one getting to the 11th.
Usyk vs Joshua Card & Schedule
The event will take place on Saturday, Aug. 20 at Jeddah Superdome. The first fight will begin at 12 p.m. ET, with the main event set to start sometime around 5:15 p.m. ET.
- Heavyweight Title: Oleksandr Usyk vs Anthony Joshua
- Heavyweight: Filip Hrgovic vs Zhilei Zhang
- Light Heavyweight: Callum Smith vs Mathieu Bauderlique
- Cruiserweight: Badou Jack vs Richard Rivera
- Super Lightweight: Ziyad Almaayouf vs Jose Alatorre
- Super Bantamweight: Ramla Ali vs Crystal Garcia Nova
- Heavyweight: Andrew Tabiti vs James Wilson
- Light Heavyweight: Ben Whittaker vs Petar Nosic
- Light heavyweight: Daniel Lapin vs Jozef Jurko
- Super Lightweight: Bader Al Samreen vs Faud Taverdi