Anthony Joshua v Oleksandr Usyk II: Fight Odds, Free Bets & Betting Offers
Anthony Joshua has once again lost his heavyweight world champion status, this time to Oleksandr Usyk by unanimous decision. AJ has done this before when he lost to Andy Ruiz in June 2019, but that fight was in New York, the first time he had fought in the States, the loss to Usyk on home soil in London in September 2020 will be a harder pill to swallow.
Fortunately for AJ all belt fights these days have a mandatory rematch clause so the man mountain will get a second chance. It will certainly be his last chance though and should he lose the match up against Tyson Fury may never come to fruition, which would be a damn shame.
Despite the recent loss many still see Joshua as not only the best boxer in the world but also a genuine clean personality and a big role model in the sports world. Still relatively young and hungry he could very well remain at the top of the boxing world for many years to come if he can claim his belts back.
The exceptional punch power of AJ means he has managed 22 knockouts in 24 wins, with now two defeats. Although the losses were big ones, temporarily stripping the IBF, WBA, WBO and IBO titles, AJ now has his sights set on getting those belts back before then going for the WBC belt to become the first undisputed world champion since Lennox Lewis.
The biggest fights of course attract some of the biggest wagers in sports betting and therefore the bookies take this market very seriously, with many running prices or promotions even at a loss to attract your custom. On this page we look at who has the best prices and offers for the latest Josuha fights, we also look at the profile and stats of the man mountain. No one since Frank Bruno has appealed to a more diverse public audience than AJ and this means unprecedented betting value can be found for his bouts.
AJ vs Usyk Betting Offers
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Anthony Joshua v Oleksandr Usyk II
|Date & Time (UK)||Where||Weight||Title||TV|
|TBC||TBC||Heavyweight||WBA, IBF, WBO||Sky Box Office|
The boxing world was gearing up for the fight that everyone wanted to see: Anthony Joshua against Tyson Fury. That collapsed, leaving a sense of disappointment combined with the need for both AJ and the Gypsy King to find themselves new fights. It was easy enough for Joshua, given that he was effectively ordered to defend his WBO title and Oleksandr Usyk was the next in line to face him as the mandatory challenger. Fury, meanwhile, defeated Deontay Wilder for a third time when the pair met in Las Vegas in October 2021 and is now looking the most likely to ultimately be unified champion.
Before Usyk took on AJ at Tottenham Hotspur stadium in London in 2021 he had yet to fight for a title in the heavyweight division, but held all four of the belts available to cruiserweight fighters. To say he was underestimated is an understatement. Usyk not only dictated the fight, preventing AJ from landing his usual knockout blows, he was the stronger fighter at the end of 12 rounds and deservedly won by unanimous decison. In fact, he had Joshua on the ropes in the last 20 seconds of round 12 and could have knocked him out had the fight lasted another minute or so.
Usyk now enters the mandatory rematch with 19 wins from 19 fights, meaning that he will now likely be favourite when the pair meet again. Joshua was full of praise for him when the first bout was announced, saying, “We are two Olympic gold medallists who have fought our way to the top and never avoided challenges.”, however, there will be no sentiment second time around. This is undoubtedly the biggest match in AJ’s career so far and will define the next few years for heavyweight boxing.
What They Are Fighting For?
Usyk didn’t bring anything to the table in the way of heavyweight belts for the first fight, having never fought for one in the division before. He certainly controls all of the cards now though as he heads into the rematch holding four heavyweight belts that AJ for a long time saw as his own. It shouldn’t be too much of a surprise given Usyk was the undisputed world cruiserweight champion.
The rematch is all about the IBF, WBA and WBO belts, which AJ had already won back from Andy Ruiz Junior in December of 2019 then defended successfully when he took on Kubrat Pulev a year later. Usyk, however, managed to snatch them from Joshua again and if there is to be a unification fight with Fury down the line the British fighter will simply have to beat the Ukrainian this time around.
Usyk will be desperate to prove that he’s got what it takes to thrive in the heavyweight division, having seen Ruiz quickly fall from grace in 2019. That is to say nothing of the fact that he’ll be loathed to lose his unbeaten record. At 35-years-old, it’s probably fair to say Usyk doesn’t have a host of top-level fights left in him, so finishing his career as a heavyweight champion would be an achievement in and of itself.
It’s not a dissimilar story for Anthony Joshua, who has to prove himself every time he steps in the ring. There are some that claim that the Londoner has been avoiding Tyson Fury, which is hard to match up to the fact that it was the Gypsy King who many believe was responsible for the collapse of the fight between the two. Regardless, the defeat to Andy Ruiz Junior in June of 2019 and now Usyk means that question marks still hang over AJ as a boxer at the highest level of the sport.
He’ll want to win his belts back in the rematch and then keep beating all of the boxers that are sent his way, ensuring that there can be no more claims of him not being a top-class heavyweight champion and positioning himself for the big one against Fury. Usyk is now the main main and AJ can’t cruise through this fight if he hopes to win back his titles for long enough to take on the Gypsy King.
What Do The Experts Think?
It says something about the way that the boxing world in general felt about Oleksandr Usyk’s chances against Anthony Joshua first time around that the WBC literally created a new division not long after it was announced that he was moving up to heavyweight. The bridgerweight division is designed to offer fighters a step between cruiserweight and heavyweight in which they can test their mettle, rather than jumping straight to the division in which only the bravest dare tread.
Oleksandr flew in the face of that though managing to win all of AJ’s belts at the first time of asking in Anthony’s back yard. Before the first fight Usyk didn’t really impress anyone when he stopped Chazz Witherspoon in the seventh during his first fight in the heavyweight division, but that was more because no one really rated Witherspoon than anything Usyk did wrong. He did dominate Derek Chisora when beating him by decision at the end of their 12-round fight, but Chisora isn’t Joshua.
Many felt that Usyk wouldn’t cope with the step up to heavyweight. Former heavyweight trainer Dave Coldwell wasn’t sure the move up a division wass working for him. He said, “I see Usyk at cruiserweight and see him at heavyweight and I don’t think the added weight suits him…I’ve always fancied him to beat AJ, but now I’ve watched him fight at heavyweight a couple of times I’m seeing that differently. Now I don’t see Usyk beating him.” Coldwell’s words were echoed by many in the boxing sphere, with a general concern that the step up in both weight and level of opponent would prove too much. How wrong they were.
Even Tyson Fury wass of the opinion that AJ would ‘walk straight through Usyk’. He said, “I don’t believe Usyk is a heavyweight for one. I think he’s a pumped-up cruiserweight who struggles with heavyweights. In my opinion, Derek Chisora beat Oleksandr Usyk – he certainly struggled with Derek Chisora and Joshua is a much bigger, stronger man than Derek…People are trying to build it up as a scary fight but he didn’t have the power to halt cruiserweights like Mairis Briedis or whoever else he fought.”
The opinion of Fury was mirrored by other boxers, including Tony Bellew, Carl Froch and Dillian Whyte, with the latter referring to it as a ‘dead fight’. Indeed, the only voices that were dissenting ones came from Frank Warren and Vasyl Lomachenko, both of whom have reasons to be on Usyk’s side. Warren referred to him as a ‘tricky southpaw’ and said that he’s ‘less sure AJ can overcome the obstacle in front him’. Lomachenko believes it will be a ‘fight between styles’, with AJ being bigger but Usyk ‘much faster’.
The talk ahead of the rematch is now very different with many now fearing AJ may be past it and unlike with Ruiz, who basically partied for 6 months before he lost the second fight, Usyk will make no such mistake. It will take a mammoth effort for AJ to get back on track and set up the fight we all want to see against Fury.
What’s Next For AJ?
Until both boxers officially retire from the sport, there will never be a moment in which people ask when Anthony Joshua will be taking on Tyson Fury. Whether that fight ever actually happens or not remains to be seen, but there’s no doubt that that’s what everyone will be calling for if AJ can win the rematch fight against Usyk. There’s no doubt that AJ’s future involves taking on the best of the best in the heavyweight division, should he make it past Usyk unscathed.
Of course, if Usyk manages to go one better than Andy Ruiz Junior and defeats Joshua a second time, there will almost certainly be a match between Fury and Usyk on the cards. It seems as if boxing politics is always the thing that gets in the way of the best fights, which is why we’re in the situation that we’re in right now. AJ is gearing up to take on Usyk again and the Gypsy King has to now face a mandatory WBC challenger, rather than the pair facing off in a unification fight, which is what we all wanted to see.
It’s also not against the realms of the possible that Joshua will take on Dillian Whyte at some point in the near future. Whyte defeated AJ when the pair were amateurs, but then lost to him in 2015. That was his only professional loss at the time, meaning that a little bit of revenge will doubtless be in the Brit’s head. The Body Snatcher currently holds the WBC interim heavyweight title, having won it when he defeated Alexander Povetkin in March of 2021, so that would be an interesting battle.
As always, there are any number of things that could happen now, including a possible second loss to Usyk. Boxing is almost as political as an afternoon in the House of Commons, meaning that the various governing bodies of the sport could yet weigh in and decide that AJ has to take on someone that nobody is talking about right now. One thing’s for certain, though: whatever happens against Usyk, there will be plenty that remain unconvinced by AJ as heavyweight champion.
Oleksandr Usyk Profile
Born in Simferopol, Crimean Oblast, Ukrainian SSR in January of 1987, he played football until he was 15 when he switched to boxing. A graduate of the Lviv State University of Physical Culture, he won an Olympic gold medal during the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. When he retired from amateur boxing, he did so with a record of 335 wins and 15 losses. Just before he turned professional, he took part in the World Series of Boxing in the heavyweight division, winning all of his bouts.
He turned professional towards the end of 2013, signing a promotional deal with K2 Promotions, which was the platform of the Klitschko brothers. He was a cruiserweight, defeating Felipe Romero courtesy of a fifth-round knockout in his first professional fight. A number of similar wins saw him climb the ranks of boxing, earning the interim WBO Inter-Continental cruiserweight title when he defeated Daniel Bruwer by way of technical knockout in October of 2014.
In 2016, Usyk travelled to Poland to take on the Polish boxer Krzysztof Głowacki, who has a record of 26-0 at the time. He won by unanimous decision, earning the WBO cruiserweight title as a result. He announced that he hoped to one day fight Anthony Joshua as a heavyweight in December of 2016, prior to his bout with Thabiso Mchunu on his American debut. In 2017 he took on Michael Hunter, once again winning thanks to a unanimous decision from the judges.
More wins, in fights such as those against other boxers in the World Boxing Super Series, saw him earn a solid reputation as a decent boxer. When he defeated Murat Gassiev in July 0f 2018, he became the first-ever four-belt undisputed champion of the cruiserweight division. On the seventh of September 2018, he signed a multi-fight deal with Matchroom Boxing, the first of which saw him come up against Tony Bellew. It was to be Bellew’s last fight, which the judges awarded to Usyk.
Although he was written off before he even got into the ring with AJ in September 2021 it was Usyk who controlled the bout from the outset, despite the fight being in AJ’s home city, London. He simply didn’t allow Joshua to box as he usually does, he held him off in the initial rounds (where AJ is famous for early knockouts) and then stamped his authority on the match winning pretty much every round. At the end of round 12 he nearly knocked AJ out and walked away with the greatest, and most unexpected, victory of his career winning by unanimous decision (117–112, 116–112 and 115–113). He may be seen as a cruiserweight but right now he is heavyweight champion and will be looking at his compatriot Wladimir Klitschko as a role model for the future.
Usyk Stats and Facts
- Full Name: Oleksandr Oleksandrovych Usyk
- Nickname: The Cat, Olek
- Nationality: Ukrainian
- Date of Birth: 17th January 1987
- Stance: Southpaw
- Weight: Heavyweight
- Height: 6 foot 3 inches
- Reach: 78 inches
- Professional Record To Date: 19 fights, 19 wins, 0 loss, 0 draws, 13 knock-outs
- Titles: Current IBF, WBA, WBO, IBO champion
Anthony Joshua Profile
Born in the UK on the fifteenth of October 1989 but raised in Nigeria until he was twelve, Anthony Oluwafemi Olaseni Joshua has become one of the best-known boxers in the world. Perhaps what is most remarkable about his rise is that he only started boxing at the age of eighteen when Ben Lleyemi, his cousin and a professional boxer in his own right, suggested that he take it up. Sufficed to say that his success since then has proven his cousin’s suggestion to have been a worthwhile one.
A natural athlete from an early age, he showed promise in both sprinting and football but chose not to pursue a career in either of them. Joshua’s mother, Yeta, was Nigerian and his father, Robert, was English but of Nigerian and Irish descent. Having travelled to his ancestral home at an early age, Joshua returned to Watford when his parents divorced in 2001. He was midway through Year Seven of school at the time, but he didn’t allow the disruption to affect his life to any real extent. Here’s a look at his story.
Despite only starting boxing relatively late in his youth, Anthony Joshua was a quick learner at the sport thanks to the coaching he received at Finchley Amateur Boxing Club in the Barnet area of North London. He won his first tournament two years after joining when he picked up the Haringey Box Cup, retaining it the following year. Unsurprisingly, those trophies gave him a taste for winning and in 2010 he fought what was just his eighteenth bout but saw him victorious in the senior Amateur Boxing Association Championship.
On the back of that, the then twenty-one-year-old was offered his first professional contract, which was worth £50,000. It was an easy decision for him, though, later saying, “Turning down that £50,000 was easy. I didn’t take up the sport for money, I want to win medals”. Winning medals was something that he was learning how to do, defending his ABA Championship title in 2011. Whilst he was known domestically at that stage, it wasn’t until 2011 that Joshua began to earn respect in an international sense. Having travelled to Azerbaijan to take part in the World Amateur Boxing Championships in Baku, he beat the World and Olympic champion, Italian Robert Cammarelle.
The domestic success that Anthony Joshua enjoyed in 2010 saw him invited to join the GB Boxing team and he soon defeated Amin Isa to become the British amateur champion at the GB Amateur Boxing Championships. After defeating Cammerelle in Baku, Joshua also beat Erik Pfeifer on his way to the final and in the process secured a place in the 2012 Olympic Games, which were due to be held in London. At the same time, he was also named by the Boxing Writers Club of Great Britain as the Amateur Boxer if the Year. Despite that and the silver medal won at the WAB Championships in Azerbaijan, Joshua was still a novice when it came to international boxing when the 2012 Olympics got underway.
Perhaps one of the most controversial moments of Anthony Joshua’s career to date occurred in the last sixteen bout during the Olympics when he went up against Erislandy Savón, the Cuban boxer who was ranked number four in the world by the AIBA at the time. The home boxer was awarded a 17:16 win by the judges after three hard-fought rounds, with many believing that Savón should’ve won but that the home crowd had swayed the decision. Regardless, it set up a quarter-final bout with Zhang Zhilei, who had won the silver medal at the Beijing Olympics in 2008, with Joshua dropping him in the second round. He took on the Kazakhstani boxer Ivan Dychko in the semi-final, winning 13:11.
The final saw him come up against a former foe in the shape of Roberto Cammarelle. At the time, Cammarelle was the reigning Olympic Champion and had twice been World Champion, so it was little surprise when he raced into the lead thanks to scores of 6:5 and 13:10. Joshua had a decent third round, however, and in the end the judges called it 18:18 in a decision that critics once again felt was a bit of a ‘home decision’. His gold medal at the 2012 Olympics earned Joshua an MBE in the 2013 New Year Honours.
Professional Heavyweight Boxer
Joshua turned professional in July of 2013 when he signed with Matchroom Boxing. He fought nineteen times in the following three years and remained undefeated during that time. He defeated Charles Martin in 2016 to lift the Heavyweight belt, retaining it when he beat Dominic Breazeale in the same year. In December 2016 he fought Eric Molina and retained the title once more.
Perhaps the biggest fight of Joshua’s career to-date came in April of 2017 when the former Olympic gold medalist went up against Wladimir Klitschko at Wembley Stadium. At the weigh-in, the Ukrainian came in at 240 and a quarter pounds, whilst Joshua was 250 pounds. In the fight, both men gave everything in front of ninety thousand people and the Englishman won by technical knockout in the eleventh round. Even without the knockout, Joshua was ahead with two of the judges.
As a professional, Anthony Joshua has fought twenty-six times to date and has won twenty-two of them by knockout, two by decision and of course two losses. The first when he temporarily lost his belts to Andy Ruiz in June 2019, before claiming them back with a display of traditional boxing in Saudi Arabia in December of the same year. Then again when Usyk beat him on home soil in 2021.
Since fighting Klitschko he has taken on Carlos Takam, Joseph Parker, Alexander Povetkin and Andy Ruiz, though the big fight that he wants is against Tyson Fury, who he called out after his win in Wembley back in 2017.
In order to fight Fury of course AJ will have to first get through Usyk and win his belts back, and given the shock Ruiz win in 2019 there will be a belief with Usyk that AJ may be past it this time. Whatever way you look at it the future of AJ and the heavyweight titles is exciting and filled with potential drama.
Anthony Joshua Stats and Facts
- Full Name: Anthony Oluwafemi Olaseni Joshua
- Nickname: AJ
- Nationality: British
- Date of Birth: 15th October 1989
- Stance: Orthodox
- Weight: Heavyweight
- Height: 6 foot 6 inches
- Reach: 82 inches
- Professional Record To Date: 26 fights, 24 wins, 2 loses, 0 draws, 136 rounds, 22 knock-outs
- Titles: Former IBF, WBA, WBO, IBO champion
Joshua vs Fury Betting Offers & Head to Head Stats
Usually we cover all of AJ’s fights on this page but the bout against Fury is so big and tough to call that instead we have created a dedicated page full of head to head stats to help you choose your bets.
Of course, as our name suggests, we also cover all of the best betting deals for the fight for both new and existing customers on our AJ vs Fury page too.
The table below is just a preview of the stats we cover about the two fighters:
|–||Anthony Joshua||Tyson Fury|
|Number KO’s (%)||22 (85%)||22 (71%)|
|Round With Most KO’s||2||5|
|Ave Strongest Round||6||10|
|Result Last Fight||Loss By UD||Win KO|