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Arum: Take it To the bank – There will be no Joshua after June 20

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Anthony Joshua

Bob Arum is just as eager as everyone else in the industry to see a truly undisputed heavyweight champion, reports boxingscene.com.
The Hall of Fame promoter struggles to understand, however, just how Anthony Joshua will have anything to do with that conversation after his next fight.
“Take it to the bank. There won’t be an Anthony Joshua after June 20,” Arum insisted during a recent segment of The Ariel Helwani Show on ESPN.
The stance behind that claim stems from the unified heavyweight title fight scheduled for that date, as England’s Joshua (23-1, 21KOs) defends versus mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev (28-1, 14KOs). The bout takes place June 20 at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in North London, England, following extensive talks after Bulgaria’s Pulev and his side—co-promoted by Top Rank and Epic Sports—nearly forced a purse bid hearing in order for their demands to be met.
In the time it took the finalize terms, the lone remaining heavyweight title changed hands along with a lineal champion being crowned. The claimant to both of those items is Joshua’s countryman Tyson Fury (30-0-1, 21KOs), who became a two-time lineal champion and first-time World Boxing Council (WBC) titlist following a seventh round knockout of Deontay Wilder (42-1-1, 41KOs) in their February 22 rematch live from MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
Fury’s win came less than three months after Joshua avenged the lone defeat of his career, outpointing California’s Andy Ruiz (33-2, 22KOs) last December to regain the slew of belts he lost in a stunning seventh round knockout loss six months prior.
Prior to Joshua’s revenge-fueled win over Ruiz, there existed a six-month period where all of the heavyweight hardware existed in North America and under the Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) umbrella.
For now, all of the bouts are now in England, though under two separate entities—Fury fights for Top Rank and on ESPN (U.S.) and BT Sport (U.K.), while Joshua is the crown jewel of the Matchroom Boxing stable whose bouts are distributed by Sky Sports (U.K.) and DAZN (U.S.).
Still, the thought of the division’s two crowned kings residing in the same region has boxing fans and experts alike optimistic of an undisputed showdown as soon as by year’s end, assuming both take care of present business. Fury is contractually bound to a third fight with Wilder, which for now is targeted for July 18 but could get pushed back. Joshua’s mandatory with Pulev is on the books for June 20. From there, the hope is that the two sides enter talks for what would easily be the biggest fight in the history of British boxing and among the most iconic heavyweight championship fights of all time.
Not so fast, though.
“Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. Anthony Joshua is getting knocked out,” Arum guarantees. “Listen, Anthony Joshua is getting knocked out, June 20 at Tottenham Stadium in London by my guy Kubrat Pulev.”

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