Joshua Plans to Make Molina “Look Easy”
With the heavyweight division wide open, Anthony Joshua appears poised to stake his claim as the future of the weight class. He defends his IBF title on Dec. 10 against Eric Molina, but it is a fight against former reigning champion Wladimir Klitschko that will determine Joshua’s future.
Joshua (17-0) will take on heavy underdog Molina at the Manchester Arena in a bout that has all the signs of being a showcase of Joshua’s talents ahead of a potential fight with Klitschko. Asked if he would have an issue with Klitschko being in the crowd on Dec. 10, Joshua says he invites the former champion to come watch his performance.
"No, no problem at all," Joshua told Sky Sports. "I’m not fighting Klitschko right now and if he wants to come down, have a little look, no problem.
"He’s more than welcome. If I had the time, I would go to his fights as well, and that’s just what we do. The one thing I learned is that watching someone is completely different to being opposite them, throwing punches."
He won the IBF belt that was stripped from Tyson Fury last year, and with Fury out of the picture completely for the time being, Joshua seems focused on proving the extent of his potential when he steps into the ring. Defeating Molina is just one rung on the ladder to the top, where Joshua believes he belongs. A fight with Klitschko has been sanctioned by the WBA, where the title remains vacant following Fury vacating, and will likely take place early next spring.
"My career, my discipline, my consistency, that’s all the message, the package we’ve been sending across to people," said Joshua. "I think that speaks louder than maybe a couple of rounds, or a 36-minute fight.
"Whatever message is sent, it is important, but what is most important is getting through the fight and making sure I go in there and do the job against Klitschko, if that fight happens."
Molina has accused Joshua of taking him too lightly, and has promised to give the IBF champ the kind of tough fight that few boxing pundits expect. Joshua, rather than acknowledge Molina as a threatening fighter, says that he fully expects to dominate from bell to bell.
"No matter who it is, I can’t go in there with that mentality, because I’ve got to go in there and make him look easy," Joshua said. "It’s all about having an easy night in the ring and that’s what makes a special fighter."