A huge debate has opened up after Anthony Joshua edged ahead in a vote to decide the winner of a fantasy fight involving the great Larry Holmes.
BT Sport has begun a tournament poll of sixteen top heavyweights. This week, the Round of 16 kicked off.
All hell broke loose thanks to UK fans.
The popular Joshua was chosen by his army of loyal followers over Holmes despite the latter defending the top division crown on 19 straight occasions.
Holmes is second only to Joe Louis on the all-time list of consecutive title victories. He won eight of those in a row via knockout.
‘The Easton Assassin’ fought in a total of 25 heavyweight title bouts and holds triumphs over Muhammad Ali, Leon Spinks, Ken Norton, Trevor Berbick, Tim Witherspoon, Ray Mercer, and James’Bonecrusher’ Smith.
Add to this the fact Holmes went 48-0 from his 1973 debut. The American was just one fight off Rocky Marciano’s unreal 49-0 retirement record before suffering a first defeat to Michael Spinks in 1985.
🥊 Fight five in the Round of 16 🥊
Anthony Joshua 🆚 Prime Larry Holmes
Who goes through to the quarter finals? 🤔
— Boxing on BT Sport 🥊 (@BTSportBoxing) April 21, 2020
It’s quite an astounding situation to see Joshua, whose best win certainly came against a past his best Wladimir Klitschko, topping the current voting process.
Joshua also lost to Andy Ruiz back in June. The Londoner then became a two-time world ruler six months later with an easy reverse in the rematch.
Many believe the 2012 Olympic gold medalist still has plenty to prove in order to be anywhere near the likes of Holmes.
Match-ups against the best two in the division, Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder still haven’t been made despite Joshua’s public intentions.
Finishing on 69-6 with 44 KO’s following a career spanning 29 years, some have reacted with disbelief due to the fact AJ even came close.
“It’s polling like this that show how many idiots follow boxing at the moment,” said one doubter.
Another added: “It’s a joke. Holmes would of smashed AJ. Typical patriot voting.”
A third stated: “That 55% of the people have probably never heard of Larry Holmes. That’s why.”
Our fantasy heavyweight bracket begins tomorrow 😈
— Boxing on BT Sport 🥊 (@BTSportBoxing) April 19, 2020
Of the eight match-ups so far, Joshua joins George Foreman (voted over Wilder) and Klitschko (voted over Frank Bruno).
The others are Vitali Klitschko (David Haye), Lennox Lewis (Riddick Bowe), Ali (Evander Holyfield), Fury (Dillian Whyte) and Mike Tyson (Joe Frazier) heading for the quarter-finals.
Furthermore, voting ends on Wednesday. Cast yours on BT Sport Boxing social media.