Anthony Joshua will be back to home comforts by the end of the year once the IBF heavyweight champion takes a well-deserved rest from the sport.
At 26, Joshua already has fought 17 times in just 30 months as a pro, claiming British, Commonwealth and world titles along the way, plus making the first defence against Dominic Breazeale last Saturday night.
Joshua’s impressive seven round pummelling of Breazeale has earned the Londoner ‘three or four weeks off,’ according to promoter Eddie Hearn, although the fighter was already snap-chatting his post-fight gym efforts by Monday morning.
Fight-wise, a five or six month break is a long time out for big-hitting Joshua and Hearn says a return to the O2 Arena in London is on the cards before a high-profile trip the United States at some point in 2017.
“The fight in America could happen in 2017. The next one I believe will be in London, well certainly in the UK,” Hearn told Sky Sports News HQ. “But he continues to mesmerise me in terms of the size and reach of the diversity of audience he’s attracting. It’s great to see where he’s taking the sport of boxing. It was another huge night.
“Everybody wants a piece of Anthony Joshua and everybody wants to fight him because at the moment he’s the most lucrative fighter in the division.
“We’ve had approaches from Africa, the United Arab Emirates and China for him to go and fight out there, but he’s 26 years old and we know what the fans want.
“They want Wilder, Fury, Klitschko and even Haye, so we have to produce those fights and guide him in the right way. He has to be in tough fights to expand his brand in the far east and in America.”
Wladimir Klitschko and Joseph Parker are the early frontrunners to oppose Joshua in his UK bout, with Bermane Stiverne, Bryant Jennings and Deontay Wilder the trio of names that have already been mentioned for any US debut next year.