Joshua shrugs off boos as he calls out Whyte after Chisora knockout
One of the greatest roars on Saturday evening came before Sweet Caroline, Hotel California and Back in Black, before the 11-and-a-half rounds of barbarity and before Dillian Whyte had howled into the air in celebration.
Instead, it was summoned by the sight of Anthony Joshua's smile as he squeezed into his position at ringside.
And yet 32 minutes later, after hundreds of haymakers had been traded, and Dereck Chisora had peeled himself from the canvas, Joshua was left wincing on the ring apron as he was unanimously booed in the midst of another round of post-fight theatrics with Whyte.
Joshua was aggrieved, Sky's team were shocked.
After 23 intoxicating rounds with Chisora over two fights that ended in hugs and respect, Whyte has shed his villainous reputation; and over in LA, earlier this month, Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder relieved Joshua of his dictatorial noose on the heavyweight division.
And so in a year where Britain's biggest sports star unified heavyweight titles and continued to fill out stadiums, December has left him in a position where no matter what he does, he leaves people displeased.
"Dillian is an idiot," Joshua said. "You know why? I showed him some respect. I just told him straight 'Dillian, I knocked you out clean when we fought, but let's forget about that, because we've both developed, so let's prove who is a better fighter now'.
"If Deontay Wilder ain't serious, and he's going to fight Tyson Fury and he doesn't want to become undisputed, Dillian you'll get a shot.
"I'm quite respectful, but if Dillian steps in the ring with me, trust me, you best believe me, none of these heavyweights are on my level."
Money-spinning manias against Wilder, Fury and Whyte are inevitable, but to Joshua that element of pride is inescapable. He has been backed into a corner by three men embittered by him, who disparage him at every turn. An angry 750lb inferno of PR horror.
Joshua is the totem at the centre of a Bermuda Triangle, trapped on a pedestal of his own success, from where the tides will keep closing in until eventually he's shipwrecked.
"When the crowd start cheering, and start saying they want to see Dillian, and if it does happen, I don't want to hear no talk when I whoop him and knock him out, 'oh he's had an easy touch, he should have fought Wilder'," Joshua added. (© Independent News Service)