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Wilder eyes Joshua boxing showdown, predicts Ortiz KO

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New York (AFP)

Undefeated heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder compares rival champion Anthony Joshua to a cow in calling out the unbeaten British heavyweight ahead of the American's Saturday title defense against Luis Ortiz.

Wilder, 39-0 with 38 knockouts, defends his World Boxing Council crown against Cuban Ortiz, 28-0 with 24 knockouts, at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

A Wilder-Joshua showdown figures to be the biggest bout the heavyweight division has seen in more than a decade -- if it ever comes off.

Wilder claims promoter Eddie Hearn fears a Joshua loss to Wilder would end the stadium-filling slugger's big money spectacles.

"Most definitely, he (Eddie Hearn) is so terrified of me, he's nervous," Wilder told AFP. "He don't want that fight to happen. He wants to milk the cow.

"Joshua is Annabelle and he is pumping that milk out of there, as much as he can, trying to make that money from his man until the time comes. He's going to continue to do his tactics of getting lower opposition in there because if the British fans buy it, he's making money."

Joshua, the International Boxing Federation and World Boxing Association heavyweight champion, faces New Zealand's Joseph Parker, the World Boxing Organization champion who is 24-0 with 18 knockouts, on March 31 at Cardiff, Wales.

"The British fans allow him to do this but once they stop entertaining this little cycle they got going on then we're going to find out. Let them keep doing it... all that will come crashing down soon."

That's because Wilder is counting on having his chance to fight Joshua and the time might be right if a unification showdown for an undisputed crown is the prize awaiting the winner.

"I must prove to myself and the people who is the best in the world," Wilder said. "He's young so we can have a double fight, or we can have a trilogy."

But first, Wilder defends his crown for the seventh time since taking it in a 2015 decision over Berman Stiverne.

- 'I see a third-round KO' -

It was Stiverne who stepped in last November to fight Wilder after Ortiz failed a drug test, and the Canadian was knocked out for his trouble.

"I'm ready for whoever," Wilder said. "Anthony Joshua will barely even mention my name. Well, I'm here and I'm ready for him. I'm the best in the world. I've been saying it for years. Here is a big test. I'm going to pass this test with flying colors.

"I see a third-round knockout. I will knock him out and then I will unify the division. I'm on a mission. There will be one champion, one face and one name. Deontay Wilder."

Ortiz, nicknamed "King Kong," tested possible for banned diuretics that can be used as masking agents but was given another chance by Wilder because he said he wants to fight the best rivals available.

"He's considered the bogey man of the division," Wilder said. "A lot of men have dodged Luis Ortiz, even champions have avoided him and a lot of people considered him one of the best. I consider him one of the best too.

"He says he's the 'Real King Kong' but 'King Kong' knows what happens when he comes to New York."

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