Exclusive: David Price surprised at Joshua v Pulev voluntary pick

Sebastian Heger

As he pushes towards sealing a massive fight on the undercard of Anthony Joshua’s next title defence, Liverpool heavyweight David Price has commented on the man who is lined up to be sharing top billing.

Price’s stablemate Kubrat Pulev is currently the number one target for promoter Eddie Hearn’s proposed ‘Night of the Giants’ later this year for what will be Joshua’s toughest test to date at Manchester Arena.

Joshua is due to negotiate with mandatory Joseph Parker after he puts his belt on the line for a second time, although if Pulev doesn’t agree the fight, the New Zealander or ex-WBC ruler Bermane Stiverne could quickly become Hearn’s first choice.

Last week, Hearn stated his intention to try and nail down Pulev for Joshua’s first trip out of London in five on November 26 and Price believes the Matchroom boss has chosen a tough task for the former Olympic champion.

“I think the Pulev fight is tougher than Joseph Parker for Anthony Joshua,” Price exclusively told World Boxing News.

“I was surprised anyone would pick Pulev for a voluntary defence because I know him and have worked with him quite a lot. He’s really good. He might not have a high knockout ratio and people might not have seen too much of him but Pulev is solid. He’s also got a really good engine.

“So yeah, I was surprised but respect to Josh and his team for going down that route. I thought the Parker fight would be the easier option for him – to be honest, to get his mandatory out of the way.

“I might be proven wrong but let’s just see how it plays out,” he added.

Price will either face Parker himself or another top contender on the North West bill and could then be pitted against the winner of the main event in March, something that would represent a massive turn in fortunes for the big man.

Just over a year ago, Price lost to Erkan Teper for the European strap, although the German has since been disgraced and banned following two positive drugs tests.

The events subsequently saw 33 year-old reinstated to the top 15 rankings and back into a lofty position where Price is able to challenge the world’s elite.