Most Boring Fight of 2023: Three Potential Fights After Underwhelming Comeback
At Big Fight Weekend, we have been anticipating the return of Joshua Buatsi, and unfortunately, his comeback was about as underwhelming as possible. The British fighter returned from a 12-month lay-off to face Pawel Stepian as he headlined Saturday night in the Boxxer Promotions/ Sky Sports main event. The fight was forgettable, with the 30-year-old fighter seemingly fighting at one pace throughout. His jab worked well and contained Stepien with ease, but aside from that, it was a drab affair from start to finish. Despite being inactive for a year, Buatsi would have surely liked to have made a statement in his first fight for Boxxer after leaving Eddie Hearn and Matchroom.
Joshua Buatsi Involved in Contender for Most Boring Fight of 2023
— BOXXER (@boxxer) May 6, 2023
Three Potential Fights for Joshua Buatsi: Anthony Yarde
When asked to assess on a scale of one to ten his showing against Stepien, Buatsi hesitated and said, “Maybe like a five. It was average,” he conceded. Despite the disappointing comeback, The British fighter will be hoping he blew away some cobwebs with this underwhelming win. The question is now, what comes next for Buatsi? Eddie Hearn has been vocal about his disappointment in “Just Business” leaving Matchroom and turning down well over a million-pound payday to fight Dmitry Bivol. After the Stepien win, Buatsi was clear about what he wants next. “I want a big fight next.”
One option for Joshua Buatsi could be an all-British showdown against Anthony Yarde, who is coming off a loss against light-heavyweight king Artur Beterbiev. Yarde carries plenty of power and spite in his punches, as proven with 22 of his 23 career wins coming by knockout. He is an accurate puncher and picks his shots well. He is adept at throwing the left hook and throws a devastating right hand. “The Beast from the East” is extremely brave, and an all-British war against Buatsi would be a brilliant spectacle.
Dan “Super” Azeez is fast making a name for himself in the light heavyweight division and would undoubtedly believe he could beat Buatsi. The London-born fighter has impressed throughout his rise up the ranks, beating Hosea Burton and recently a methodical, destructive performance against Rocky Fielding. His most recent win saw him defeat Thomas Faure via a twelfth-round TKO, which saw him win the vacant European light-heavyweight title.
A fight between Azeez and Buatsi would undoubtedly be a brilliant spectacle, with both fighters possessing an impressive array of punches. Both fighters are brave and will keep coming forward. Azeez possesses brilliant ring IQ and selects his shots very well. Buatsi will have to be defensively tight and negate the strengths of “Super” as much as possible.
Igor Mikhalkin is a Russian boxer who held the IBO light-heavyweight title from 2017 to 2018. He has a record of 25-3, and would provide a stern test for “Just Business” he is defensively sound and is not easy to hit. He is very disciplined and sticks to his game plan well. The Russian fighter is a tricky southpaw who will test Buatsi’s ring IQ and his patience. Mikhalkin will also test the British fighter’s defence, as he is an excellent good counter-puncher.
Whatever comes next for Buatsi, he will need to improve on his showing against Stepien. He is currently 17-0, and his demands for a big fight next – will need to be met by his promotional stable, Boxxer. The fight against Bivol has arguably never been further away, but there are some fascinating options available for the British fighter. Tell us who you think Buatsi should face next.