Unified WBA/WBO/IBF Heavyweight Titlist 🇬🇧Anthony “AJ” Joshua (24-1-0, 22KO) has everything you could want as a prizefighter – true power, an Olympic Gold-Medal, world title belts, skill, fan appeal, and true star-power within the sport right now, that is only eclipsed by 🇲🇽Canelo Alvarez. Despite having all of those blessings at his disposal, you can’t help but to feel that something seems to be missing from the overall equation to 🪢tie everything together – and Joshua knows himself what that component is…and that is a lack of respect from pundits regarding the manner in which he handles his business, despite the victories.
Now where does this notion stem from? well you have to do an analytical look-through on Joshua’s mentality, how it is set up, and how he tends to approach things from a verbal and action-based standpoint. In front of the cameras, Joshua has a very jovial, extroverted approach to people, especially in broad media circles.
To some people, it feels like a well rehearsed persona, to the point where it comes off to them as disingenuous. Whether that is the case or not, we remain neutral on that – we are just merely stating some reasons, and rationale as to why he hasn’t been fully accepted in wider circles when considering his level of talent.
Then there’s some people who are believing of his personality, but don’t approve of it, with the feeling of him not possessing a serious enough demeanor to command the plateau he has worked himself up towards – so they can’t back him, because he doesn’t fit in accord with the principles and standards that they hold to high regard on a pedestal.
As far as the happy-go-lucky attitude, it’s understandable to a point. Now if you are one who watches basketball, or has a knowledge of the NBA, he in that respect reminds me a lot of someone like a Dwight Howard, who was disliked by quite a few people for similar reasons, despite his impact in the sport.
Now for Joshua, there was once a time when it was indisputable, that he wanted to be liked by everybody, and went out of his way to do so. In more recent times, he’s felt the need to openly stay a bit truer to his beliefs given some circumstances, but even there, some people don’t believe the message, or ideal that he is putting out on those occasions.
For Joshua, it comes off as a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t” catch-22. On top of it all, he has had a bit of a feud between he and 🇬🇧Lennox Lewis, Britain’s greatest Heavyweight Champion, and one of its greatest fighters. Naturally there will be a schism in the fandom whenever two cross-generational talents are at odds with one another, and for Joshua’s sake, many reasons stated above have been echoed by Lewis.
It seems to be something Joshua cannot be able to escape through conventional means, so how can he get around those hurdles? he can’t…but the critical acclaim will certainly help to overshadow the criticisms if he can flourish. He’s won a fight where he had to survive difficult circumstances against 🇺🇦Wladimir Klitschko, and he’s also succumbed to punishment from an 🇺🇸Andy Ruiz.
To his credit, he bounced back with a big performance against Ruiz in the rematch, to silence doubters who had the hammer in hand, looking to nail the coffin shut on his star stature. A big performance against Saturday’s opponent 🇺🇦Oleksandr Usyk would certainly take him a long way. Of course IF he beats Usyk by way of his power instead of his boxing acumen, then people may understandably stunt the achievement due to the size discrepancy, but as a prizefighter, you do what you have to do in order to get the job done.
The main point being emphasized here…..is that Joshua needs to fully cast aside the desire to be liked, and just go out there and do what he does best inside of the boxing ring – he will not get to that place where he receives a universal 🖆stamp of genuine approval, so there is no need for him to harp on it.
Being that the star power is electric, they will watch him anyway, so for as long as he boxes, showing up in big fights, and showing out will be the best way to put a blanket over the fire of criticism that some have about his personality, to which can become a second thought on his career narrative.