Joshua signs multi-fight Showtime deal


Joshua signs multi-fight Showtime deal

London (AFP) – Britain’s IBF world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua has signed a multi-fight deal with American cable network Showtime, it was announced on Wednesday.

Showtime, which showed Floyd Mayweather’s last six fights, will broadcast Joshua’s first title defence against unbeaten American Dominic Breazeale (17-0) at London’s O2 Arena on June 25.

Highly rated Joshua (16-0), the reigning Olympic champion, scored a second-round knockout of American Charles Martin last month to take the IBF crown in only his 16th professional fight.

“I know there are a lot of positive things happening in boxing and around my career. You see my reaction when these things happen and you’re only good when you’re winning,” Joshua told a press conference in London.

“Every fight could be your last fight. That is why I’m serious and I don’t let success go to my head. Me and Dominic are very equal — 17 fights, 16 fights; turned professional around the same time.

“It is a very equal fight. He is my fourth undefeated fighter I’ve been fighting. He gets to announce himself in the UK and I can announce myself in America and the best man will come out on top. May the best man win.”

Breazeale, 30, has recorded 15 stoppages in his 17 victories to date, while all 16 of 26-year-old Joshua’s wins in the paid ranks have come via knockout.

Breazeale will be fighting in the UK capital for the first time since a first-round defeat at the 2012 Olympics and he said: “It is a pleasure to be back in London.

“I couldn’t care less about the deals AJ has going on with Sky or Showtime. All I can do is prepare for June 25. I wish it was this weekend.

“Charles Martin came over here and dropped the ball. He wasn’t prepared for it. I’m hoping Anthony Joshua is preparing to be in a war and a dog fight, because that is what I’m bringing.

“We are both Olympians and we represented our countries for a reason. I’m not coming here to hear the final bell or the judges scores. I’m coming all guns blazing and to knock Anthony Joshua out.”

British boxer Anthony Joshua celebrates beating US boxer Charles Martin (not pictured) following their IBF World Heavyweight title boxing match at the O2 arena in London on April 9, 2016
Copyright AFP/File Justin Tallis