Opinion: Time for boxer Joseph Parker to take the money and run

OPINION: Joseph Parker is a nice guy. He is an intelligent man, brought up in a loving, religious family.  

He is also a terrific boxer and on the weekend, fought for four world championship heavyweight titles.

I wish he would leave it at that.

I interviewed Joe about a year ago and he was adamant what his goal was. He wanted a shot at the heavyweight title and if he fell short, he would give boxing away.

He did not want to be an old boxer hanging on with fading hopes of glory, becoming broke and brain-damaged in the process.

That moment to give the game away arrived on Saturday night in Cardiff, when he was easily beaten on points by Anthony Joshua.

After the defeat, there did not seem to be any real reflection on what had happened and what the future might look like.

Instead, we had trainer Kevin Barry urging him to jump straight back on the horse, and Parker saying he wanted to maintain his fitness and take on another top heavyweight with the aim of working his way back into title contention.

Parker earned a reported $13 million from the fight. I do not know what he might end up with after tax and all the other ticket clippers are paid, but he would have to have at least half of that left.

Imagine having $6-8 million in your bank account when you are just 26. Get decent financial advice and you can set yourself up for life.

Parker would have the added advantage of keeping his marbles too.

I noticed he was wearing a beautiful suit in his television interviews before the fight. Clearly he had paid a visit to Saville Row while in London.

This is what the fight game is about - being flash and splashing the cash. So it might look like he is earning loads, but he is swimming with sharks who are expert at relieving people of their money.

How much do those training camps in Las Vegas cost and who pays for them? Can anyone really say that after this pretty lucky run, Joseph Parker has what it takes to beat the likes of Deontay Wilder or Anthony Joshua?

He hasn’t got the size, and he hasn’t got the background of anger and hatred to propel him forward against the big men.

Be a real winner, Joe. Get your money and get right out of there while you still have some.  

Because the reality is that your future boxing career will be as a punching bag for other aspiring heavyweights on their way up.

Mitch Harris is the host of Night Talk, 8pm-midnight on RadioLIVE.