Juggernaut Joyce Backs Parker To Dethrone ‘Big Bang’ Zhang In Heavyweight Clash
Joe ‘Juggernaut’ Joyce hopes Joseph Parker can defeat WBO interim heavyweight champion Zhilei ‘Big Bang’ Zhang in their twelve-round co-feature fight on the Anthony Joshua vs. Francis Ngannou card on March 8th in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
A Tale of Two Knockouts
Joyce (15-2, 13 KOs), who was knocked out twice by Zhang (26-1-1, 21 KOs) in 2023, says ‘Big Bang’ could put Parker (34-3, 23 KOs) down if he connects with one of his “accurate” shots.
In 2022, Joyce knocked out Parker in the 11th round in a fairly one-sided fight, using his size and pressure to wear down Joseph before finishing him.
Surprisingly, many fans are picking Parker to win against the 6’6″ Zhang, and it’s possible that he could be the favorite in this fight.
Parker’s win over a gunshy, inactive 38-year-old Deontay Wilder on the December 23rd ‘Day of Reckoning’ card in Riyadh has some people believing that he can do anything now.
The closer truth is that Wilder had a poor game plan, failed to adapt when it was clear early on that things weren’t working, and looked afraid to throw punches.
“I’m hopeful for Parker. I’m hopeful for Parker to do it to beat Zhang, and be a little more smart and skillful than I was and get in there,” said Joe Joyce to Secondsout, hoping former WBO heavyweight champion Joseph Parker can defeat interim champion Zhilei Zhang on March 8th in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.
Trilogy or Rematch? Joyce Weighs His Options
It would be better for Joyce if Zhang comes out victorious against Parker because that keeps the interest alive for a trilogy match with the two-time Chinese Olympian.
If Zhang loses, there won’t be as much for Joyce to gain fighting him again. Of course, it could be that Joyce has no interest in fighting Zhang again after getting knocked out twice by him last year. It’s doubtful that Joyce’s promoter would be open to the idea of putting a fight together with Zhang, knowing that ‘The Juggernaut’ could lose for a third time.
“Zhang, he’s very accurate, and if he hits him with a good shot, he can put Parker down no problem,” said Joyce.
“Either of them would be good,” said Joyce when asked about his interest in a rematch with Daniel Dubois or a trilogy match with Zhang.