Joshua-Klitschko II may be heading to Sin City

Joshua-Klitschko II may be heading to Sin City

Published: June 28, 2017


The Las Vegas Strip at night. Photo: Ron Niebrugge/Wild Nature Images

The Las Vegas Strip at night. Photo: Ron Niebrugge/Wild Nature Images

The British are coming. The British are coming. Well, the British and a Ukrainian. After last April’s heavyweight title fight between Anthony Joshua (19-0, 19 KOs) and Wladimir Klitschko (64-5, 53 KOs) had put 90,000 in Wembley Stadium, the natural inclination was that the rematch would take place in the U.K again. According to Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn, there are numerous destinations that are in the mix to host Joshua-Klitschko II. Some of the places that are being considered are Nigeria, Dubai, and Cardiff in Wales. Cardiff may be best known for hosting the super middleweight unification bout with Joe Calzaghe and Mikkel Kessler in 2007. 

Now an unlikely city has thrown its hat into the race in Las Vegas.  Joshua is arguably the biggest star in boxing possibly only behind Canelo Alvarez. Joshua has proven without a doubt to be the biggest star in Europe and now looks to try his hand in the United States. Joshua has only fought outside of England twice having fought in Scotland and Wales. Unlike other British fighters such as Amir Khan and Kell Brook who went to the United States with little fanfare, Joshua will likely be more reminiscent of Ricky Hatton. Hatton would have thousands of fans come to Las Vegas most famously for his bout with Floyd Mayweather in 2007. That night Hatton's fans took over the crowd with their chants ‘There’s only one, Ricky Hatton.' It is possible that Joshua could have the same effect as Hatton. 

VIdeo Courtesy of eiontv on YouTube

Klitschko, 41, has fought in the United States a total of 10 times with four of those matches taking place in Las Vegas. The Ukrainian’s last fight in the States was against Bryant Jennings (19-2, 10 KOs) in 2015 where he won a unanimous decision in Madison Square Garden. His last fight in Las Vegas goes all the way back to 2004 when he faced DaVarryl Williamson (27-8, 23 KOs) at Caesar’s Palace. 

Video Courtesy of ShowtimeBoxing on YouTube

The venue that can hold the largest amount of fans in Las Vegas is the T-Mobile Arena that can fit 20,000. If the T-Mobile Center gets the assignment of Joshua-Klitschko II, it will have held almost all of the biggest fights in 2017. This includes Canelo-Chavez Jr. and the upcoming events of Mayweather-McGregor and Canelo-Golovkin. 

It does seem out of the ordinary for Joshua to want to come to the states when he can fill up any large stadium in the U.K. But perhaps the allure of having a fight in Las Vegas, where so many big fights have taken place, is enough to bring him across the Atlantic. Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn spoke with Sky Sports regarding the location of the Joshua-Klitschko rematch. 

“Vegas has taken a bit of a frontrunner role in those. I know the British fans would love to do a trip out there for Joshua-Klitschko. Nigeria is still in the mix, Dubai as well, and of course Cardiff. But like I said, Vegas probably got its nose in front at the moment.”

“I would like to keep it in Britain. The fans have been incredible to Anthony Joshua, but if it means traveling to make sure this fight happens for world boxing, then it means taking a few place loads to Vegas for a night and an experience they won’t forget. Anthony Joshua is the world heavyweight champion. He’s not the British heavyweight champion. He wants to break boundaries, and so do we. To see Anthony Joshua’s name up in lights on the Las Vegas strip is certainly something that appeals to us all.”
— Eddie Hearn

The rematch between Joshua and Klitschko will sell in almost any location. The greatness of the first fight is enough to sell fans on a rematch. This development also gives fans in the U.S. the opportunity to view and experience Joshua in person. 


(Feature Photo: Getty Images)

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