Can Anthony Joshua recover from the Oleksandr Usyk defeat to rule the heavyweight division?

"Whatever happens in the Usyk fight, AJ vs Fury is still the match that so many people want to see," The Panel of experts give their verdict on whether Anthony Joshua can become the world's no 1 heavyweight

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Watch a classic KO win by Anthony Joshua

Anthony Joshua is planning a stunning revival, but can he still topple Oleksandr Usyk and Tyson Fury? The Panel of experts deliver their verdict...

Joshua's second world title reign was ended by a points loss to Usyk in September, although he can gain swift revenge in an immediate rematch which is set to be held in 2022.

WBC champion Fury could then stand in the way of Joshua's bid to become the world's No 1 heavyweight.

Adam Smith

Of course it's possible. Anthony Joshua is a two-time world heavyweight champion and we know the heavyweight division is buoyant but also dangerous.

Few can predict any fight that happens at this level now. What we have to say is that Tyson Fury is the premier heavyweight in the world. We're waiting to see if and when he'll face Dillian Whyte, who deserves his world title opportunity in 2022.

Anthony Joshua, OIeksandr Usyk
Image: Anthony Joshua will face Oleksandr Usyk again in a rematch

It could be the biggest year for heavyweight boxing yet. AJ has to get through Oleksandr Usyk, which is going to be very, very difficult. It's a fight he can win, but it's a very tough ask against one of the pound-for-pound best of our generation.

Whatever happens in the Usyk fight, AJ vs Fury is still the match that so many people want to see. A defeat or two as we've seen with AJ and Deontay Wilder and Wladimir Klitschko, it's not the end of the world.

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Even if AJ does lose to Usyk again, there's still big fights out there for him. Will he become the No 1 heavyweight in the world again? It's a tough, hard division. But he's proved that he can come back from a bad defeat and he's definitely got the competitive spirit, the willingness and the dedication to do everything he can to try and achieve that goal.

Matthew Macklin

There's talk that Anthony Joshua is going to add another new trainer. He's only trained with Rob McCracken and yes, a few other people have come in recently, but he's been based in Sheffield since his amateur days. It's going to take him a couple of fights to mesh with a new training team, if that's true. You need to get confident training with that guy to get on the same page.

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Highlights of Joshua's points loss against Usyk

Why would you go into a fight with Oleksandr Usyk when you're trying to rebuild your confidence? AJ went straight into the Andy Ruiz Jr rematch, but he could see reasons why he would improve on that performance. This decision should be based purely on boxing and confidence and maybe building a relationship with a new training team.

I think he needs a couple of wins, a couple of training camps to make the adjustments and then go for another shot at the world titles. He won't have any trouble getting that shot, because of his pulling power.

Natasha Jonas

I believe Anthony Joshua can do it. Just because Joshua was beaten by Usyk doesn't mean he would lose to Fury. Different styles and different fights. I do think he had the wrong tactics against Usyk, but he has activated that rematch clause and we should see something different from AJ.

I've always said that Joshua would win against Fury. Now, it's a little bit harder to bet against Fury. If Deontay Wilder can't knock out Fury, then I don't think anyone can. Joshua would have to win the rounds in that fight, but he's already shown that he's a top-class heavyweight.

Carl Froch

I think Anthony Joshua needs to rediscover the same explosive style and ruthless instinct that he showed in that win over Wladimir Klitschko. He's bigger, stronger with more height and reach than Oleksandr Usyk. He's got all the physical attributes needed to win that fight. He must rekindle the fire that brought some destructive wins earlier in his career. He is big enough and powerful enough to beat anybody, especially Usyk who is much smaller in comparison.

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Joshua showed his KO power against Kubrat Pulev

AJ has talked about adding new trainers, but I think he should just remain with Rob McCracken and instead make his team smaller. That's what worked for me, I worked with Rob throughout my career, but I'm not Anthony Joshua. I was meticulous, I thought about a lot, but I put a lot of trust in my coach. My belief in my coach was unquestionable.

George Groves

Anthony Joshua is definitely still up there as one of the best, and one of the top three in the world. I think he defeats Deontay Wilder and beats the other guys coming through. But we now have to see how much desire he still has. It will be extremely difficult to get back to that No 1 spot, but never say never in the heavyweight division. It only takes one punch.

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Watch Usyk sharpen his reflexes with a juggling display

He might be able to make some changes, make some adjustments and come back even stronger. It could be very tough to defeat Oleksandr Usyk. I think Usyk might improve from his first fight against Joshua.

Usyk is the best talent in the heavyweight division. He's the only legitimate heavyweight who could go in a pound-for-pound rating. He doesn't win his fights because he's 6'9" and 20st. He wins his fights because he's got great ability.

Johnny Nelson

Anthony Joshua needs to make the right moves, the right commitments and do everything correctly. It's easy to say, 'He should have done this, he should have done that'.

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Joshua regained his world titles with a masterful win over Andy Ruiz Jr

AJ has all the technical ability, he has the talent. He has the résumé. I don't think it's an impossible task for him to come back and beat OIeksandr Usyk, I really don't.

The answer is - 'He can, if he really wants to.' It's just a case of how much he wants it.

Dave Coldwell

Anthony Joshua has got the dedication and mindset to do it, but there's work to be done. The two main men that are in front of him - one is Oleksandr Usyk and one is Tyson Fury. In order to become the No 1 heavyweight, he's got a big mountain to climb.

Can he do it? Yes. If he comes back from the Oleksandr Usyk loss, beats Usyk in a rematch and defeats Tyson Fury, then he has to go down as an absolute legend of British heavyweight boxing.

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