Anthony Joshua to Make $1m+ for Every Punch He Takes in Francis Ngannou Fight

  • Reports suggest Anthony Joshua will make $50m in his fight with Francis Ngannou
  • He takes an average of 44 punches per bout, meaning he will make $1.1m per hit
  • Many are finding the fight hard to call, although Joshua is clear favorite at -500
Anthony Joshua
British boxer Anthony Joshua will make an estimated $1.1m per punch taken in his fight with Francis Ngannou this week. [Image:]

Arabian gold

Saudi Arabia will serve as the battle ground for an intense matchup this week. British goliath Anthony Joshua is taking on UFC-star-turned-boxer Francis Ngannou in a hotly anticipated heavyweight fight. They will go head-to-head for up to ten rounds in Riyadh on Friday.

While many are finding the fight a difficult one to call, one thing is certain – both fighters are going to make a lot of money. The nation of Saudi Arabia is targeting the biggest fighters in the world by offering sky high purses, and the Joshua/Ngannou bout is no different.

perhaps the cash will make Joshua’s bruises a little more worth it

Utilizing data regarding the average amount of punches Joshua takes per fight, VegasSlotsOnline News has calculated that he will earn around $1.1m for each hit he takes on Friday. With those blows coming from the official hardest puncher in the world, perhaps the cash will make Joshua’s bruises a little more worth it.

How much will Joshua make?

The main reason boxers are beginning to choose Saudi Arabia over other potential fight locations is the money up for grabs. The nation is offering millions of dollars to popular fighters to secure the biggest fights on the planet. So far, some highlights include George Groves vs Callum Smith in 2018, Joshua vs Oleksandr Usyk in 2022, and Tyson Fury vs Ngannou last year.

The pay contrast versus other locations is stark. For instance, British fighter Fury reportedly made around $40-$50m for his fight against Ngannou late last year – a bout that seemed more of an exhibition before it began. Meanwhile, in 2022, the Gypsy King made just $13m for his third deciding fight against Deontay Wilder in Nevada, a matchup between arguably the two best on the planet.

Joshua stands to make $50m to Ngannou’s $20m

Media reports suggest Joshua is going to make a similar amount for his fight with Ngannou this week. A Sports Business Journal article reported that Joshua stands to make $50m to Ngannou’s $20m. That article has since removed any suggestion of the figures, but other news sites have since confirmed those amounts.

If it is $50m as reported, it will be the largest pay day in Joshua’s career. As you can expect, his pay per fight has increased since the early days of turning pro. His first fight against Dillian Whyte made him just $3.8m in 2015. That grew to close to $20m when he faced Wladimir Klitschko for the IBF, WBA, and IBO heavyweight titles in 2017. His biggest payday to date is believed to be around $40m for his rematch with Usyk in 2022.

How many times does Joshua get hit?

For our research, VSO News has assessed data from Joshua’s past three fights that all took place in 2023. This includes his bouts with Jermaine Franklin Jr., Robert Helenius, and most recently Otto Wallin. He won all of those fights, the first by unanimous decision, the second by knockout, and the third by technical knockout.

In his fight with Franklin, Joshua took a total of 58 punches out of the 426 thrown by his opponent. In contrast, Joshua landed around 31% of his own punches, connecting with the American 117 times. Ultimately, Joshua was dragged all the way to the end of 12 rounds at London’s O2 Arena, winning but apologizing for his inability to knock Franklin down.

He landed around 36% of the punches thrown, compared to Helenius’ 28%

As for Helenius, the Scandinavian fighter landed 48 punches on Joshua before it was game over in the seventh round. Joshua knocked Helenius out after landing 26 more punches. He landed around 36% of the punches thrown, compared to Helenius’ 28%.

Finally, in his most recent bout with Swedish fighter Otto Wallin, Joshua was dominant from the start. He landed a total of 53 punches before the fifth-round stoppage, a hit percentage of 32%. Wallin struggled throughout the fight, only landing 25 punches for a ratio of 19%. Wallin’s corner ultimately threw in the towel after a particularly punishing round, giving Joshua three wins from three in 2023.

If we take these numbers into account, Joshua took an average of 44 punches in his bouts last year. Dividing Joshua’s reported purse of $50m by this figure gives us the $1.1m per punch total for his upcoming bout with Ngannou.

Who will win Joshua vs Ngannou?

Joshua’s boxing journey has been turbulent to say the least. While he seemed to steam through all opposition in his first years as a professional, a slip up against Mexican Andy Garcia in 2019 seemed to begin a fall from grace for the star. He has since suffered two more defeats, both to Ukrainian Oleksandr Usyk, losing him his WBA, IBF, and WBO heavyweight titles.

Joshua dropped his opponent’s belts out of the ring

Along with his lacklustre performances, many have criticised the Brit’s mental fortitude. This was made worse directly after his second consecutive loss to Usyk when Joshua dropped his opponent’s belts out of the ring. He then grabbed the mic and unleashed a passionate rant that has since been widely criticized by boxing fans.

Meanwhile, no one expected Ngannou to make much of an impact on his professional boxing debut against heavyweight champion Tyson Fury. Instead, Ngannou took the fight the full ten rounds and delivered a knockdown to the Gypsy King in the process, landing 59 of his 231 attempted punches. He lost by decision, but many crowned him the true winner for his performance.

To make matters worse for Joshua, Ngannou holds the world record for the hardest punch. In 2018, he registered a striking power of 129,161 units on a PowerKube – a device that measures the power of a punch. To put that into perspective, former World’s Strongest Man winner Eddie Hall tried to break that record and failed, only managing 113,999 units.

Sportsbooks have Anthony Joshua as the -500 favorite to take the win on Friday. Ngannou has odds of +333 for victory.  

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