British boxer Dillian Whyte has accused Joseph Parker of coasting to defeat against Anthony Joshua in April, questioning the Kiwi’s fighting spirit in the process.
Whyte and Parker meet at London’s 02 Arena on July 29 (NZ time) in a crucial heavyweight fight that has title implications.
The winner will undoubtedly be at the forefront of contenders for Deontay Wilder’s WBC championship, and Joshua’s WBO, WBA and IBF belts.
Parker lost a unanimous decision to Joshua in Cardiff, the first time the Brit hadn’t finished an opponent inside the distance.
Speaking to Newshub, Whyte suggested that he had never seen a professional fighter so content with losing.
“Look, Joseph is a cool person and I have no beef with him,” Whyte told Sunday Sport’s Andrew Gourdie and Jim Kayes.
“But in the AJ fight, knowing he was down on points and not going to win a decision, I believe when the time came for him to take chances, he wasn’t willing to take the chance and leave it all in the ring like a true champion would.
“He seemed to be very happy to be the first fighter to not be stopped by Joshua.
“I have never in my life seen a fighter so happy to lose by decision. That’s my opinion on how I thought it went off.
“Everyone should have done more – Parker, his corner… everyone.
“As a fighter, you know if you are winning or losing. Had he beaten Joshua, the world would have been his oyster. ”
Whyte has also fallen to Joshua in a seventh-round stoppage.
The 30-year-old told Sunday Sport that he went out on his sword in the only loss of his professional career – a fight that only had pride on the line, not the world heavyweight championship.
“When I fought Joshua, my shoulder dislocated in the second round and my coach tried to pull me out,” Whyte told Newshub. “I told him I could still get the job done.
“I went out there and did everything I could to knock him out in a fight, just for bragging rights.
“Parker was fighting for the unified heavyweight championship, with a chance to be one of the biggest stars ever in the world of boxing.
“That was his time to take a chance and cement his name as a chief Samoan warrior, but I don’t believe he did that.”
Some pundits have question why Joshua didn’t go for the kill against Parker, suggesting he may have feared the Kiwi’s knockout power.
It was a stark contrast to Joshua’s previous bouts, including his win over ‘The Body Snatcher’.
Whyte dismissed that notion, pointing to the high stakes involved for the winner of the unification fight.
“At that time [Joshua] was very hungry, coming up and climbing through the ranks. The Parker fight was more business, a massive amount of money and prestige for the winner, and a unification fight with [Deontay] Wilder was looming.
“When it was me and him, it was more about bragging rights. There was a lot of ego involved in that fight.
“AJ is older and wiser now – there was simply a lot more at stake for him [against Parker].”
Source: Brad Lewis