ANTHONY JOSHUA has revealed he would think about pulling out of his rematch with Oleksandr Usyk if it were a ‘smart business move’.
Tyson Fury has recently called for Joshua to stand aside and let him take on Usyk in an undisputed super-fight.
Joshua, 32, triggered his rematch clause with Usyk after being outclassed by the Ukrainian over 12-rounds at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in September.
But speaking to iFL TV, AJ said: “I think people know not to approach me with that rubbish. People know not to approach me with that bull****.
“It may have come to my team but I think they know not to bring to me at the minute.
“At this stage of my career it’s not about the money, it’s about the respect. You’ve got to look at what I want out of this game; number one is respect, you don’t have to like me but you will respect me.
“The second is to go down as a throwback fighter, someone who was willing to fight the best in their division so that when I walk the streets with my son, my cousin and my nephews, people will know I’m a real fighter.
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He went on to confess: “In terms of stepping aside, I don’t know if that goes in line with what a morally stand for… but I want to be known as one of the smartest businessmen as well.
“I want to make the smart decisions and if the money is right we would have to look at it but respect has more value than money.
“Will I take the step-aside money? If its a smart business move… will it affect my reputation and respect?
“Will I still get to fight the best fighters? Those are the three things I have to consider.”
Joshua is currently expected to return to the ring against Usyk early next year.
But Fury fears another AJ defeat would end all hopes of an all-British bout for the ages.
Joshua therefore is possibly weighing up taking the offer were it to make sense business wise, and not tarnish his legacy as a fighter.
Although standing aside could leave AJ in limbo and without a fight.
Joshua lost his WBA, IBF and WBO titles for a second time earlier this year following his shock defeat to Andy Ruiz Jr in June 2019.