Anthony Joshua is now back in the mix at the top of the boxing heavyweight division.
His recent victory against Mexican Andy Ruiz Jr earned him a second reign as a world champion.
The heavyweight division is full of talented and heavyweight challengers which has brought the division's excitement back, which hasn’t been seen for decades.
Blockbuster fights like Deontay Wilder vs Tyson Fury II is an exhilarating bout to look forward to, but all upcoming fights on the horizon will decide who the best heavyweight is in the division.
Most boxing fans can debate who is the supreme champion right now, however, there are 15 heavyweights whom The Independent have shortlisted.
- Ranking Anthony Joshua's top 10 wins
- AJ's thoughts on every rival heavyweight
- Joshua's next seven fights predicted
15. Oscar Rivas
Amid all the fallout of Dillian Whyte’s issue with UKAD, Oscar Rivas’ success in their bout last summer is easily overlooked. He staggered the Brit in the ninth round, was relentless coming forward, and only lost by a narrow points decision on away soil.
14. Alexander Povetkin
Close to a world title shot in 2016, Povetkin was due to face Deontay Wilder for his WBC crown, but later tested positive for banned substances. He did, however, eventually fight Anthony Joshua, losing in emphatic fashion.
13. Adam Kownacki
‘Babyface’ is one to watch in 2020, with Al Haymon guiding his career. Kownacki was always mentioned as a potential opponent for Deontay Wilder – also managed by Haymon.
12. Jarrell Miller
Before ‘Big Baby’ threw the toys out the pram after failing a drugs test and costing himself a world title shot against AJ, Miller was rising up through the heavyweight ranks with an undefeated record of 23 wins and one draw to his name.
11. Michael Hunter
A brilliant amateur-turned-professional, Hunter has only one defeat to his name against Oleksandr Usyk in the cruiserweight division, but is now making a case for a world title shot next year.
10. Filip Hrgovic
He made light work by dispatching Eric Molina in quick time. El Animal will be hovering on the brink of earning a world title shot throughout 2020.
9. Kubrat Pulev
The Bulgarian was embroiled in a controversial episode earlier this year with a female broadcaster, but now, under Bob Arum, Pulev appears primed to get his shot at a world title again as the IBF mandatory.
8. Joseph Parker
The former WBO heavyweight champion made two successful defences of his title before losing it to Anthony Joshua by unanimous decision a year-and-a-half ago.
7. Luis Ortiz
He came within seconds of victory in his first fight against Deontay Wilder and was unlucky in the second bout before being stopped by a single punch against the WBC champion.
6. Andy Ruiz Jr
Andy Ruiz, also known as The ‘Destroyer’, was anything but in his rematch with Joshua, which was a huge shame as he looked to have transformed the ‘big three’ into a quartet. He has shown he is able to shake up the heavyweight division by causing a bit of an upset in June by defeating AJ.
5. Oleksandr Usyk
The polished skills of Usyk would be a nightmare for both Wilder and Joshua, though, their hulking power may ultimately prove decisive – we must see how Usyk takes a shot against a powerful heavyweight.
4. Dillian Whyte
With just the one loss to Anthony Joshua on his record and a string of 11 straight victories behind him, Whyte is hammering at the door for a world title shot. He continues to be dodged by the ‘big three’ and has done for the past two years because they know the danger that ‘the Body Snatcher’ possess.
3. Anthony Joshua
Back on track with the smartest victory of his career to regain the WBA, IBF and WBO titles from Andy Ruiz. Joshua can once again look for the fights that will come to define him. The time might be now where AJ is thinking about challenging Wilder for the last remaining belt which the American currently has.
2. Tyson Fury
Most boxing fans will say that Fury is the best in the heavyweight division, even without owning a belt. The Brit should have won on the scorecards against Wilder in 2018, but there’s a clear argument that it is not long until Fury has one of the belts to his name.
1. Deontay Wilder
A controversial choice as No.1 perhaps considering the American owns only one of the belts. Comparing the ‘big three’ at the moment, Wilder predominantly wins this debate right now. Wilder’s terrifying power is relentless and was on show in his recent fight against Ortiz. Fury is preparing for the rematch against the ‘Bronze Bomber’, but Wilder’s power isn’t going anywhere, Fury must evade the lethal right which he failed to do so in the first bout.
So there you have it, there is The Independent's top 15 heavyweight boxers in the world right now.
People will agree, people will disagree, but most of the names there are there on merit.News Now - Sport News