Trainer of Deontay Wilder, Malik Scott, believes that Wilder has nothing to fear as if and when the former heavyweight world champions finally meet in the squared circle.
Joshua returned to knockout ways with a seventh-round stoppage of Robert Helenius following a straight right hand with Helenius brushing on the ropes. The stoppage by Joshua was the first since his ninth-round defeat of Kubrat Pulev in 2020, with victory over Helenius marking his second victory since back-to-back defeats to Oleksandr Usyk in 2021 and 2022, respectively.
Attention will now be turning towards a highly probable heavyweight encounter which is speculated to be held on January 13th between the pair in Saudi Arabia, to be promoted by Skill Challenge Entertainment. Representatives of the Saudi promotional entity were present ringside at the 02 Arena. They had been in London since Friday with the objective of Joshua and Matchroom Boxing finalising terms for the contest with Wilder.
Malik Scott, who was also in London as the head cornerman for Gerald Washington as the American lost to Derek Chisora in the chief support to Joshua-Helenius, was one keen observer of Joshua’s performance.
Speaking to Youtuber October Red, Scott praised Joshua for his balanced and patient performance, commenting that Joshua was right to say, ‘I need to take my time’.
“They were interviewing (Matchroom) me while I was looking at the fight. It went up to the [seventh] round, but before then… the story is that AJ was being patient; he wasn’t trying to go for the knockout. That’s the sales pitch. But I really look at it like he wasn’t taking chances early on.
“And that’s like a good thing, especially when your next fight is possibly Deontay Wilder, who’s the hardest puncher in the history of the sport. It’s good for you to start practicing, not just fighting off your front foot. It’s good for you to go into fights and say, ‘I need to take my time.’”
However, Scott was overall confident that on Joshua’s performance right now, Wilder has nothing to fear in January.
“Was I really impressed besides the knockout? No. Did it give me type of feeling that we got some trouble coming in January? No.
It actually makes me more confident I know that he only has three or four rounds in the ring with Deontay before he gets knocked out.”