Anthony Joshua vs Tyson Fury will not be settled inside the ring this year, but the debate from fans outside the ring continues to rage on.
For the last couple of years, a major point of contention in the AJ vs Fury conversation has been the comparison of their respective career résumés.
Since beating Dillian Whyte for the British title back in 2015, Joshua has had ten world title fights and built a deep record.
AJ beat Charles Martin to win the IBF belt, and then made defences against Dominic Breazeale and Eric Molina to round off 2016.
After this, he jumped up in levels to take on Wladimir Klitschko the following year, stopping him in front of 90,000 at Wembley Stadium.
A defence against Carlos Takam came next, and then AJ unified by taking Joseph Parker’s unbeaten record.
He became the first person to knock Alexander Povetkin out, rounding off an impressive 2018.
Joshua’s next step saw him travel to America and attempt to grow his profile by beating Andy Ruiz Jr, however this backfired badly as he was floored four times and stopped inside seven rounds.
He completed a successful turnaround in 2019 though, and got revenge over Ruiz Jr by outboxing him in Saudi Arabia.
The pandemic affected AJ’s plans for 2020, but he was able to round off the year by beating mandatory challenger Kubrat Pulev.
Now, it’s Usyk on the schedule for Joshua – a name that will add further depth if conquered on September 25.
The only thing missing from his résumé is a bout with one of the other ‘big three’ heavyweights of this era.
While Fury’s record is not as deep as his British rival, he does trump him in this regard, having twice shared the ring with Deontay Wilder.
The ‘Gypsy King’ picked up two wins over Derek Chisora and one over Christian Hammer on the way to his first title shot.
Then, in 2015, he outpointed a younger and more active version of Klitschko than the one Joshua stopped two years later.
However, his life spiralled out of control and he did not return to the ring until 2018.
When Fury came back, it was initially against two lesser foes, but he then jumped up in levels to challenge Wilder.
Many felt he was unfortunate not to be awarded the win in this fight, which was controversially scored a draw.
In 2019, Fury opted to take two interim bouts before facing the American again.
His first against Tom Schwarz was an easy win, but the second saw him tested by a solid contender in Otto Wallin.
Fury came through this with a points win and a nasty cut, then headed into his 2020 rematch with Wilder.
This time around, Fury left no doubt as he floored the ‘Bronze Bomber’ twice and stopped him in round seven.
Neither man has fought since, though they are scheduled to meet in a trilogy on October 9, live on talkSPORT.
talkSPORT.com’s top 10 combined ranking of Anthony Joshua’s and Tyson Fury’s best wins
1. Fury vs Klitschko (2015)
2. AJ vs Klitschko (2017)
3. Fury vs Wilder (2020)
4. AJ vs Povetkin (2018)
5. AJ vs Ruiz Jr (2019)
6. AJ vs Whyte (2015)
7. AJ vs Parker (2018)
8. AJ vs Pulev (2020)
9. Fury vs Wallin (2019)
10. Fury vs Chisora (2014)
It’s irrefutable that Fury holds stronger wins at the top end of his résumé than Joshua.
AJ was not the one to dethrone Klitschko, nor Wilder, plus Fury achieved these victories on foreign soil.
However, if you assess the depth of the full records, it’s obvious that Joshua trumps the ‘Gypsy King’.
Should he add former undisputed cruiserweight king Usyk to his slate on September 25, it may end the debate, at least for the time being, over who has the strongest résumé.
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