Anthony Joshua insists he won't slip up against Kubrat Pulev because he is eyeing up an undisputed showdown with Tyson Fury.
The WBA, IBF and WBO heavyweight champion faces the Bulgarian this weekend at Wembley Arena.
But much of the pre-fight talk has been about a mega clash with WBC title holder Fury next year.
Joshua, 31, had the same issue before he lost to Andy Ruiz Jnr in 2019 but that time the chat was about Deontay Wilder.
“I don't want to say I took my eye off the ball with Ruiz in New York,” said Joshua.
“People say Ruiz took his eye off the ball for the rematch but I don't believe that stuff.
“For me in New York I knew I had a fight in front of me with a big media presence.
“It's good to talk about Fury, Wilder, [Daniel] Dubois, [Joe] Joyce and even the [Alen] Babics of the world.
Anthony Joshua warns Kubrat Pulev he missed chance to beat ‘puppy AJ’ three years ago
“It's good to talk about all these guys.
“My main focus is always Pulev but it's tempting to look beyond.
“We're painting the bigger picture. That's what I'm trying to create.
“It's tempting to look at what's beyond me, but it's motivation rather than a distraction – get through this and move on to the bigger fights.”
Joshua's promoter Eddie Hearn admits Joshua is “edgy” and “nervous” this week in the fight hotel but believes that is a good sign.
He said: “I think he's so motivated now. The pain of the Ruiz fight will always sit there.
Tyson Fury tells Anthony Joshua: 'I'm no superstar – I'm only interested in smashing your face in'
“That is why he is quite nervous because he remembers what happened, when you have never experienced it you don't fear about it, he has the fear now of getting beat.
“That will motivate him to be sharper.”
Joshua v Pulev is live on Sky Sports Box Office this Saturday
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