After it’s announced that. Joshua would fight Parker in Cardiff on 31 March, promoter Eddie Hearn said he was proud two reigning heavyweight world champions would meet in Britain for the first time.
In terms of global resonance, we are moving a step closer to one heavyweight holding all four belts. That has rarely happened in any weight division, and never among the heavyweights.
Britain is the focus of the heavyweight championship of the world, a prize that used to be the richest in the sport.
It has more interest globally than it has had for almost two decades – since Evander Holyfield, Lennox Lewis, and the dying embers of Mike Tyson’s career. That is largely due to Joshua – the IBF and WBA champion – and Parker, who is putting his WBO title on the line.
If WBC champion Deontay Wilder beats Luis Ortiz on 3 March, it adds an extra dimension to the Joshua-Parker fight, and it will be absolutely clear what is at stake for the winner.
There will be jeopardy for Joshua. Lose against Parker and he effectively loses more than one fight – he will also miss out on that date with Wilder.
But Joshua is a massive favourite – Parker has been given much less chance of winning than Conor McGregor was against Floyd Mayweather.
It is about his power and being in a home fight. He is a level above Parker, but we are about to find out if that is right.