Joe Joyce will be ringside for Anthony Joshua’s fight with Oleksandr Usyk and is “looking at them as his future opponents,” says his manager Sam Jones.
Joshua’s IBF, WBA and WBO heavyweight titles are on the line against undefeated Usyk on September 25 at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, live on Sky Sports Box Office.
Joyce will make his presence felt as a future rival, says Jones: “Absolutely. Joe is going there to say: ‘Look, I’m No 1 in the WBO, let’s go!’
“Joe will be ringside and is looking at them as his future opponents.”
Undefeated Joyce will be the next WBO mandatory challenger but knows he must wait for his eventual shot at a belt.
“No, it won’t be next,” said Jones. “I believe the Joshua vs Tyson Fury fight will happen if they both come through their respective fights.
“Then after two [Joshua vs Fury] fights, Joe could fight one of them.
“But Joe will fight for the WBO title before AJ and Fury’s rematch.
“Their first fight will be for the undisputed title but, before the second, I believe the belts will become vacant.
“Joe will fight whoever he needs to fight for that belt, then the winner of AJ vs Fury.
“Joe respects Joshua, likes him as a person, they get on well. But Joe wants to fight the best. It’s business.
“AJ and Fury are the best so that’s who Joe wants to challenge.”
Joyce was in talks to fight Usyk when it seemed likely that Joshua and Fury would share the ring.
“When it was spoken about that Joe could fight Usyk? Believe me, Usyk and his team did everything humanly possible to avoid the fight,” Jones said. “They know what Joe brings.
“Nobody will be excited to fight Joe but, unfortunately for them, he’s ranked at No 1 so somebody will have to fight him.
“Joseph Parker is a great fight – if it presents itself, we’d take it in a heartbeat.
“Andy Ruiz Jr, Luis Ortiz. It’s a real possibility it could happen. Joe is game for either of those.
“We are looking forward to making big, big fights now for Joe. I’ve made it clear that we only want big fights and that’s what we’ll get.”
Joyce is unbeaten in 13 fights – since a breakthrough stoppage of Daniel Dubois last year, he has also stopped Carlos Takam.