Barry Hearn spoke about the capability of Anthony Joshua to become a heavyweight great in a recent appearance on The Brian Moore Show.
The Matchroom supremo believes Joshua is the best top division fighter around. Hearn also backed Joshua to prove it before he retires.
Currently, Joshua is undefeated on 22-0 with 21 knockouts, having enjoyed another stellar year.
AJ further unified against Joseph Parker before taking out Alexander Povetkin in fine style.
Joshua was also nominated for the WBN Fighter of the Year 2018 Award and is in the top five of the voting.
The return of Tyson Fury has taken some shine off Joshua’s year, although Hearn (📸 Sky Sports) is adamant his man remains number one.
“I’m giving you my personal feelings, not necessarily the company policy. So I believe that Anthony Joshua is head and shoulders the number one heavyweight in the world,” Hearn told Love Sport Radio.
“I think he’s the only credible world champion out there. I think he’ll prove to be one of the great heavyweights not now, but over the next five or six years.
“Anthony Joshua is a very intelligent young man, he plans his future like that. We’re not looking to make a few quid quickly, we’re looking to build a legacy.
“Now I could be totally wrong and the moment he gets beat, I’ll hold my hands up. At the moment, he hasn’t been beat, has he? He’s had 22 fights, six world title defences.
“It’s unbelievable in the history of heavyweight boxing, already after 22 fights. You know, Deontay Wilder’s had over 40 fights, probably only had one or two proper ones but that’s okay,” he added.
Hearn’s prediction would need to see Joshua share the ring with Fury or Wilder in the near future.
As things stand, Wilder and Fury are in talks for a rematch.
This leaves a couple of standout options for Joshua, which Hearn addressed on the show.
“If those two (Wilder and Fury) are not coming to the party quickly I would imagine that Eddie is looking at Jarrell Miller in New York as a Madison Square Garden debut for AJ would be commercially very solid,” pointed out Hearn.
“Then Dillian Whyte who I think is pound for pound the most dangerous heavyweight out there. If I was ranking them in danger, I would say that Deontay Wilder is the easiest fight. I think Jarrell Miller is an unknown fight because we don’t know how good he is, he’s a big lump.
“I think Tyson Fury is a tricky fight but when you hit him he does tend to fall over although to his credit he gets up again, which is remarkable.
“I’ve got the greatest respect for him for what’s he’s done. (He) pulled himself together from the brink, brilliant story.
“(But) The most dangerous is Dillian Whyte. So that’s where we’re up to,” he added.