The betting makes it a case of how Anthony Joshua will win on Saturday. Betfair's boxing pundit Frankie Monkhouse points out the value...
A little-known heavyweight boxer, standing in at late notice to win the world title against all the odds, upsetting the saviour of the division in the process. It's the stuff of Hollywood scripts, but rank-outsider Carlos Takam will aim to make his wildest dreams a reality on Saturday night.
The battle-hardened African takes on Anthony Joshua in Cardiff for IBF, IBO and WBA heavyweight titles, coming in as a replacement for Kubrat Pulev, who was forced to pull out due to an injury picked up in training. AJ wasn't happy, but will take his fury out on Takam, and with minimal fuss too, according to the betting.
Champion must remain professional
We'll never know the true story behind Pulev's injury, but these things happen, it's heavyweight boxing, we have hard-hitting athletes with a lot of force behind their work. It's not a disappointment for fight fans either, many experts in the game taking Takam as a more dangerous opponent than Pulev was anyway. That remains to be seen, but what Joshua must do is clear his head of the drama, and keep his mind on the game. Stick to what he does best - knocking opponents out of the way.
The popular Brit extended his perfect start to 19 wins from 19 fights, maintaining that 100% KO average with the 11th round stoppage of Wladimir Klitschko last time out. Critics wanted to see Joshua in trouble, they wanted to see how the golden boy of London would cope with being dumped on the canvas by a live opponent. They got it in Wlad, who nailed AJ in the sixth round with a monster shot. He couldn't finish his man, and paid the price.
Klitschko took Joshua into deep water, asking all the right questions, but the champion came up with all the right answers. The undefeated king of the ring has a reputation for getting rid of opponents early, but it's worth noting that two of his last three challenges have gone beyond the half-way stage - Klitschko in 11 and Dominic Breazeale in seven last summer.
Traders want to keep another KO/TKO win close, offering no more than 1/12. That's short, but is actually the best you'll find on an early night. Value, when placed against his price to win the fight by any method, 1/40 on the sportsbook, 1.05 the exchange. Is Takam the man to do what 19 others couldn't and take Joshua the distance? 13.50 says he is.
Don't believe the hype - Takam is ready
Much has been made of Takam being a late stand-in for this fight, a lack of fitness and sharpness making an already uphill struggle plain impossible. Don't believe it! The 39-fight veteran was told to be on stand-by from the start, advised to stay in shape and wait by the phone, just in case anything should happen to Pulev. Joshua's handlers didn't want a wasted training camp, with time running out to fight before the end of 2017.
In that respect, it has all worked out perfectly for the French-based fighter, at least so far. The well-travelled 36-year-old was last seen stopping Ivica Bacurin in two rounds back in the summer, following the fourth round KO of Marcin Rekowski. Not results that are going to cause Team Joshua any sleepless nights, but it's worth remembering Takam took Joseph Parker the distance last year, eventually losing a unanimous points decision.
Alexander Povetkin was also dragged over 10 rounds for a WBC silver title in 2014. Some of the hardest hitters in the division aren't dealing with this man early. The outsider has been stopped only once in his career to date, meaning Joshua would make a statement by dealing with him in the first few rounds. Takam would dearly love to hear the final bell. This fight going the distance is 15/2 on the Sportsbook, while an away win, regardless of how he achieves it, is a monster 25.00. Attractive, but I wouldn't have free money on it.
AJ can send a message to nosy Parker
Joshua has enjoyed the longer training camp, is spurred on by that knockout win over Klitschko last time out, and has a chance to make a point by stopping a man Joseph Parker couldn't. The latter will be at the forefront of his thinking on Saturday. There's not a lot for average punters to get excited about in the market, meaning we dive into the specials for our share of the value.
AJ in rounds 1-3 is worth an interest at a handy 2.50, while those after a bit more can take a chance on there being a knockdown in the first round, 3.05 doing the rounds on that one. The favourite's last fight was tougher than this will be. Joshua knows it, meaning he's able to go and put on a bit of a show, catching the eye of Parker in the process. This will be exciting, but there's enough of a price in those bets to make it pay.
Joshua in rounds 1-3 @ 2.50
Knockdown in round one @ 3.05