Lennox Lewis explains how Anthony Joshua followed in his own footsteps
One man who knows what it takes to avenge a defeat is heavyweight legend and current boxing analyst Lennox Lewis.
The division’s last-ever undisputed champion got revenge over Oliver McCall, and more famously, Hasim Rahman.
After the ‘Rock’ stopped Lewis to take the WBC and IBF belts, the pugilist would take Rahman out in the rematch seven months later.
Alongside Buster Douglas, Rahman is considered as a one-hit-wonder having made just one defense of the heavyweight world title.
Andy Ruiz Jr. has become the latest to follow that trend after a poor performance saw him relinquish the world titles he earlier won at Madison Square Garden.
With Anthony Joshua back at the summit of the heavyweights, Lewis shared some sympathy towards the fellow Brit, who had to endure some tough moments after his defeat to Ruiz.
“A lot of people lose in life or fall off the horse I always put it,” Lewis told CompuBox TV. “When they get back on the horse people don’t have that same opinion of them until it’s been proved.
“For me, I cemented my proof by knocking out the opponent (Rahman) that knocked me out in the round before.
!I made the adjustments that I needed to make, and they were straight away adjustments.
“Anthony Joshua now, he boxed and made great adjustments but he’s still learning. He probably felt a lot of pressure in that fight as he was very focused.
“This is what you need to be, be in a space yourself. I always say that it’s lonely at the top because you’re the one who has to go in the ring. You’re the one who has to go through all the people telling you or saying, ‘you’re not going to make it’.
“You have to say, ‘no I’m going to make it’. I believe a lot of those questions and feelings were going through Anthony Joshua’s head because they were going through mine.”
Lewis believes Joshua won the rematch by going back to basics. Alongside the appointment of Angel Fernandez, ‘AJ’ executed a near-perfect tactical performance to outpoint Ruiz. The FOX analyst shared his thoughts on the outcome.
“My initial thoughts on the fight, I had a couple of initial thoughts; I felt that obviously Anthony Joshua made some adjustments. These are the kind of adjustments you need to make.
“He brought back that Olympic style boxing which was important, especially in a fight like this.
“I was kind of disappointed with Ruiz coming in at that weight and looking like that because so many heavyweights or people out there are trying to become heavyweight champions.
“They’re putting in the work and when they’re faced with the opportunity take full advantage of it. Then, there are other people that have that opportunity twice and don’t live it to the fullest.
“I’m like, I feel bad for a lot of people out there working hard. Those wanting to become champions.
“A fight like this gives you a lot of confidence and he made the adjustments that were needed to be made for an opponent like this.
“But AJ’s up at the top right now and there’s still a lot of learning to be done and if he can make those adjustments then he should do well.”