Shocking finishers, excitement, comebacks, devastating defeats, and massive slogfests abound in the squared circle of 2021. Rivalries were settled, as Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder completed their trilogy, with the Gypsy King emerging triumphant and establishing his status as the heavyweight division’s man to beat.
Giants fell elsewhere, and a new one arose. Anthony Joshua lost all three of his world belts to Oleksandr Usyk, who might now go on a quest to become the undisputed champion.
Floyd Mayweather has rolled back the years in a fight with a YouTuber. Canelo Alvarez had plenty of time to win another weight class. Lawrence Okolie became the new cruiserweight world champion for Britain, while Dillian Whyte resumed his tough road to a championship shot by avenging his stoppage loss to Alexander Povetkin with a stoppage of his own.
However, there are still plenty of t’s to cross and i’s to dot in the sport, with many boxers yet to face off despite a war of words and fan enthusiasm, titles to unify, unbeaten records to put to the test, and matches that remain tantalizing prospects.
- 1 Here are a few of the biggest match-ups we’d like to see in the new year:
- 1.1 Tyson Fury vs Dillian Whyte
- 1.2 Tyson Fury vs Oleksandr Usyk
- 1.3 Anthony Joshua vs Deontay wilder
- 1.4 Terence Crawford vs Errol Spence Jr
- 1.5 Lawrence Okolie vs Mairis Breidis
- 1.6 Conor Benn vs Winner of Khan/Brook
- 1.7 Canelo Alvarez vs Gennady Golovkin III
- 1.8 Joe Joyce vs Joseph Parker
- 1.9 Josh Taylor vs Gervonta Davis
- 1.10 Tyson Fury vs Anthony Joshua
Here are a few of the biggest match-ups we’d like to see in the new year:
Tyson Fury vs Dillian Whyte
Everything pointed to this fight taking place after the WBC ordered Fury to fight Whyte as a mandatory opponent – possibly in February, but the heavyweight division is so unpredictable.
An intercontinental bout with a world title on the line would be thrilling, and Whyte’s explosive style, along with Fury’s evasiveness and movement, promises to be interesting if it is approved. It was claimed that Fury’s team has begun discussions with Whyte, but Arum stated that everything is contingent on the outcome of AJ vs Usyk.
Tyson Fury vs Oleksandr Usyk
Even if it isn’t in 2022, expect to see this at some point. If the Gypsy King defeats Joshua for the second fight next Spring, he will have to face the Ukrainian at some point, but if Joshua chooses to sit aside, this undisputed bout might take place in 2022.
Anthony Joshua vs Deontay wilder
The fight appeared to be set in stone yet never came together. These two were the rainmakers of the sport and the belt holders three years ago; today they are both fallen champions.
After back-to-back losses to Tyson Fury, Wilder is eager to start a new chapter, while Joshua is hoping for an immediate comeback against Usyk – but isn’t given much of a chance.
Terence Crawford vs Errol Spence Jr
After WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman urged these two to fight, we shall hopefully find out who the finest welterweight on the planet is in 2022. Crawford solidified his place as one of the best pound-for-pound fighters on the earth by defeating Shawn Porter is one of the toughest fights of his career, but a showdown with Spence Jr would put his skills to the ultimate test.
So much is riding on this fight, which would bring the WBC, IBF, and WBO championships together, with both unbeaten fighters desperate to prove they are the greatest in the industry. It’s time for someone’s O to leave.
Lawrence Okolie vs Mairis Breidis
Now that Okolie is the cruiserweight world champion, it’s time to put his skills to the test. A meeting with the fearsome Mairis Breidis would provide that, and the Latvian has already slammed the Brit with a request that they fight in his homeland.
After Oleksandr Usyk, whom he gave a run for his money, went up to heavyweight, Breidis is regarded as the king of the cruiserweight division. He intends to do the same once he has mastered this weight class, and he reminded Okolie that he has been ‘eating my leftovers’ after stopping Krzysztof Glowacki in six rounds – the same fighter Breidis defeated in three.
Conor Benn vs Winner of Khan/Brook
Benn is prepared for a big battle, and after knocking out Chris Algieri, he said he wasn’t being put to the test. Put yourself up against the likes of Amir Khan or Kel Brook, and you’ll have no such complaints.
As the son of famous fighter Nigel designs his rise to the top, the grudge match between the two is one of the most talked-about fights of next year. However, rumors of Benn confronting the winner are also common.
Canelo Alvarez vs Gennady Golovkin III
Given that the Mexican pound-for-pound champion has just revealed his intention to go up to cruiserweight to compete for a title in a fifth-weight class, this fight may be pushed to the back burner, but Canelo might return to face Golovkin after facing Ilunga Makabu.
And the third fight between Canelo and Golovkin has been spoken about for a long time after the first one ended in a draw in 2017 – before the Mexican won by majority decision the following year.
Joe Joyce vs Joseph Parker
Is it time for Parker to receive another crack at capturing a world title after defeating Dereck Chisora for the second time? With Fury awaiting Whyte, Usyk facing Joshua, and the prospect of rematches, he’ll have to get in line, but while he’s waiting, why not fight Joe Joyce?
Josh Taylor vs Gervonta Davis
Another heated boxing rivalry that needs to be settled, even if Taylor himself has placed doubt on the fight taking place anytime soon – merely because he believes Davis’ management is terrified of pitting him against the Tartan Tornado.
Davis has also relinquished his WBA’regular’ world championship at super-lightweight to fight George Kambosos Jr at lightweight, leaving Taylor as the undisputed super-lightweight champion.
Tyson Fury vs Anthony Joshua
It almost seems counterintuitive to leave this one off the list, but we’ve saved it for last – because it’s still the most anticipated bout of the year.
Although there was talk of Joshua stepping aside to allow Fury to fight Usyk, so accelerating expectations of an all-British confrontation, it appears that Joshua has no desire to give up his chance to reclaim his belts and will fight Usyk in the Spring.
When Joshua fights Fury, fans want to see all of the belts on the line, and it would be even better if it was an uncontested battle. After losing to Usyk, Joshua insisted on fighting him with or without the titles.