‘His punch resistance is gone’: Tony Bellew says Joe Joyce is no longer the fighter he once was


Former British heavyweight Tony Bellew joined talkSPORT boxing to discuss the latest stoppage loss of Joy Joyce, who was once again knocked out by Zhilei Zhang over the weekend. As Bellew sees it, Joyce isn’t the same immovable object he was before, and that’s only going to spell trouble for him from here on out.

Bellew on Joyce’s latest performance against Zhang

“Listen, his punch resistance is gone. It’s as simple as that. Joe Joyce I’ve seen, basically get hit with a bat and he’s just walked through it. Daniel Dubois is a seriously big puncher in the heavyweight division, Daniel Dubois hit him with absolutely everything and it just bounced off him and he was basically laughing at him, walking him down.

“Now how do you go from that to being rocked off jabs and hurt every time you get touched?…This is boxing and when the resistance it goes, it goes. And I’ve seen it happen to legends of the game over the years. It’s one of those things.”

On where he thinks Joyce goes from here and if he can ever become world champion

“I don’t think he beats the British champion. That resistance was his greatest asset, guys. I’m sorry to say that because I’m a big fan of Joe Joyce. Joy Joyce is a great fella, he’s an absolute diamond, but without that punch resistance guys, he is not above British level.

“Ultimately — I’m telling you now — he’ll go in for the British title and he’ll get hurt because you can’t miss him. You cannot miss him. He’s not a guy who’s got fluid boxing skills…the way he wins is because he wears you out because you punch him so many times and you get tired. I mean, what kind game plan in the grand scheme of things is that?

“That sounds really harsh but I’m sorry, that’s just the way I see it and that’s how he is.”

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