Logic determined that in the 10th round of his massive home performance against Joe Joyce in November, Daniel Dubois decided to remove himself from the firing line and take a knee.
Joyce, quite understandably, begs to differ.
Dubois’s defeat is a mark on the record for the 2016 Olympic silver medalist, who is officially 12–0 with 11 Thading KOs. He had been in good company at first, but Dubois was the young, unstoppable force chosen by the pundits to pull out of the juggernaut.
It turns out it was the Big Juggernaut who was in indestructible mode and his reward is another marquee name at Carlos Takam on July 24 at the SSE Arena, Wembley, as he hunts down a world title shot this year or so.
For Joyce, it’s only the big nights from now on and Takam more than fits the bill, hailing the muscle-bound Frenchman as a dangerous man of the division with 28 KOs to his name. With his heavyweight CV being 47 fights deep, the Cameroon-born banger has competed four times more professionally than 35-year-old Joyce.
Whether he can count on such an experience remains to be seen.
Meanwhile, Joyce was on hand to take one final look at the fight that changed his career as well as the public’s perception of his place in the heavyweight pecking order.
Joyce explains that he had previously stunned someone without actually touching them, but insists that Dubois was feeling the effects of a ramrod jab.
“I once saw a man running into a tree when I saw him!” Remembered the popular Putni native. “Well, it was from my jab – full body weight jabs! Apparently people were saying it was the earlier fight that did the damage, but that last shot was a full-powered shot and Dubois hit Must have felt something going in his eye and thought he would have had enough.”
But was it always intended to bring about Dubois’s downfall through unusually nimble footwork and a crispy reply?
“I always work on the jab because it’s the most important shot. When something is working and landing every time you stick to it. That was not the plan and there were other combinations that I was going to do.
“Maybe if it hAcesparks’t been stopped I would have picked it up in the last two rounds – especially knowing I was down.”
Indeed, Joyce was behind on the cards at the time of the stoppage, even though he considered himself the dominant force throughout the fight.
“I was very comfortable there! DuBois was coming forward throwing his shots for a short burst of about 30 seconds and for the whole fight he was breathing heavily and couldn’t really keep up with the pace. I was draining his power and moving away from his shots, meanwhile dropping his jaw with accuracy and force each time.”
Joyce admitted that he had to resist the fight in his traditional fashion of moving forward and was prepared to take a shot or two to land himself.
Now recalling a few pre-Olympic encounters with the WBA interim champion reminded him that it would not be in his best interest to trade leather independently.
“Yeah Dubois definitely has power and I felt it even before the Rio Olympics. He landed a big shot and I definitely felt it in the sparring. I was looking at some stars and I have always known that he has that power.
“But that’s not the only thing in boxing and you should have other qualities – trust your strengths and work on your weaknesses.
“Styles are fighting and you have to know what your opponent’s particular style is going on and that’s why you need a coach who can read that and you work on that in training. It will be different tactically for every fighter.
“I reserve for some fights being tactical! I enjoy shedding tears but I was never going to charge and get knocked out.”
Dubois returned to his path of destruction after recovering from orbital injuries in June and the usually tenacious Bogdan Dinu was cut half a minute in the second round.
Joyce was happy for his younger rival, but could not match the apparent happiness of Dubois himself, who showed a rare display of emotion.
“He was so happy with his last win – I’ve never seen him so happy!
“It is hard to take the first loss, especially when you have prepared so well and everyone expects you to win. He has dynamite in each hand but I think there is a point where you build up too much and get complacent.
“Then you’re in for a big downfall and that happens a lot to British fans. I remember with David Price, he was the next big big thing and then he lost to Tony Thompson, then lost. When you fall then they build you up and really slate you.
“Daniel is showing you that you can be harmed, come back and get back on the wagon.”
Carlos Takam getting tips from Nganau on Joe Joyce’s fight
Carlos Takam has revealed he is confident of victory over Queensberry heavyweight ‘Juggernaut’ Joe Joyce – as his close friend Francis Nganou has assured him that Joyce is ‘not dangerous’.
Heavy-handed UFC heavyweight champion Ngannou, who shares both Cameroonian and French roots with Takam, left Joyce in Vegas in November last year before the latter’s winning bout against Daniel Dubois.
At the time, Joyce’s manager Sam Jones told Sky Sports that Nganou could “box at a high level” and had “outrageous power”, giving Joyce “the most entertaining spur I had ever seen”.
The complements were apparently not mutual, although Carlos Takam has told SecondOut’s Danny Flexon: “I know Francis feuded with Joe Joyce. When he asked me to spar with Joe I said that. I don’t want to but if they want they can leave my friend Francis and Francis said yes.
“Francis says he’s a tough guy and he works hard. But he said he doesn’t want to say he’s like Mike Tyson, because Joe Joyce can’t walk like Mike Tyson…he always comes straight.
“He told me he’s a good guy but not dangerous.”
Takam and Nganou have a history together, they share a boxing coach in Davy Cooper and Carlos helps his friend prepare for his last MMA fight – an outing that saw him stipe to become the UFC Heavyweight Champion of the world. Removed Miocic.
“We get together, when he trained for his last fight. When he won the title, we fought together 5 or 6 times. I helped him prepare for that fight. We had fought together before. We were together in France before coming here (Las Vegas).”
Ngannou’s claims seem to contradict the facts, however, as Joyce holds a 12-0 professional record with an astonishing 11 KOs.
In his most recent bout, against Daniel Dubois, the fight was halted when ‘Dynamite’ succumbed to his left eye after repeated blows.
That injury, later diagnosed as nerve damage as well as multiple fractures in the eye socket, would be classified as ‘dangerous’ by one’s standards.
However, Takam appears to be completely oblivious to the facts, insisting that he has no concerns about his conflict with the Juggernaut on 24 July.
He said: “Joe Joyce is a strong guy but he doesn’t have the same experience as me, he’s never fought someone like me.
“Joe Joyce isn’t the best fighter I’ve fought, but I’m going to be the best fighter that Joyce has fought.
“He’s a good rival for me to come back to the UK. London is like my second home. The fans there are waiting for me, every day they’re texting me ‘Carlos, when will you be back in London? You’re in London’ When will you fight?’
“I have time to prepare for this fight and I am going to go and win the battle. This is a good opportunity for me to come back home and make a comeback in the heavyweight division.
“I’m so excited, so happy to be back in London.”
On undercard at the SSE Arena, Wembley, on 24 July, Hamza Shiraz (12-0, 8 KO) defends his third WBO European title against Spaniard Ezequiel Guria (15-1, 3 KO). Swansea’s Chris Jenkins (22-3-3, 8 KO) will eventually defend his British and Commonwealth welterweight title against Nottingham’s Ecko Esshuman (14-0, 5 KO) after recovering from injury.
In a well-matched fourth title fight, Peacock gym ace Chris Bourke (9–0, 6 KO) claimed his WBC International super-bantamweight title against James Beach Jr. (12–1, 2 KO) of Bloxwich. defended.
There is also heavyweight action featuring David Adele (6-0, 5 KO), while George Fox (3-0) of Mill Hill will make his debut at Queensberry. Super-featherweight hope Reading Charles Frankham (2-0, 1 KO) has also been added to the stacked bill alongside ‘The Gent’ Mickey Burke Jr. (4-0, 1 KO), following his first stoppage win in November. also returns. Last year.
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