Anthony Joshua's promoter Eddie Hearn admits the Brit will be finished if he loses in his next fight.
Joshua, 33, is set to return to the ring in April as he bids to get his career back on track following brutal back-to-back defeats to Oleksandr Usyk.
His opponent is yet to be confirmed although Hearn has suggested it will be a top 10 boxer, with unbeaten Australian fighter Demsey McKean emerging as a contender.
McKean insisted this week he was confident of retiring the former heavyweight world champion and Matchroom chief Hearn says defeat is pretty much unthinkable for Joshua.
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“You go into that fight in April – you know that with defeat, it’s all over, really. It would be a third back-to-back defeat," Hearn told iFL TV.
"This is the most excited I have been on AJ's journey so far because it is exciting. A great performance and a showreel knockout gets everyone saying, ‘We’re back, we’re back baby.’
“That’s what I can’t wait for, because I love it when our backs are against the wall. They are the best moments and this is one of those moments."
Hearn went on to suggest a victory for Joshua in April would set up a rematch with Dillian Whyte this summer.
He added: “AJ wants to be in the biggest fights possible and if a bigger fight rears its head – there’s only two bigger fights in the division than Dillian Whyte, that’s Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder. But the key is April 1."
Despite claims an agreement had been reached with McKean, the Australian insists he is yet to receive any confirmation.
'I've never been locked into the fight, that's one thing. I've never had a contract or anything like that. It was just leaked that I could be a potential opponent," he told the Mail.
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