Sports News

Does Deontay Wilder still have enough to be a heavyweight?

Written by: Sean Crose

Deontay Wilder, the former WBC heavyweight world champion, returns to the ring this Saturday when he faces the legendary and powerful Zhilei Zhang in a 12-rounder in Saudi Arabia. Wilder, who some believe is the most powerful boxer ever seen in his long and storied history, will be fighting for the first time since his decision loss to former champion Joseph Parker in December. Indeed, Wilder's powers are well documented. All but one of his 43 wins have come by long distance. In addition, Wilder knocked Tyson Fury down multiple times in their 2018 draw and their 2021 rubber match (which Fury went on to win).

However, what did the 38-year-old Wilder leave behind? His three fights with Fury were great stories. Furthermore, the man looked nothing like his old self when he fought Parker last winter. And while Parker looked great and deserved his upset win, it was strange to see Wilder so exhausted in the ring. Without a doubt Parker used a winning strategy, but it's worth wondering if something else was at play. Was Wilder showing evidence of a declining career? Saturday's fight should provide answers.

In fact, Zhang should be made for Wilder. The New Jersey fighter (in the Chinese style) is not the fastest or fastest fighter in the world. The guy can hit, though. It's difficult. It's very difficult. Maybe not as hard as Wilder, but hard enough to put the enemy behind the opponent. BoxRec has an exit rate of over 80%. Zhang also knows how to put pressure on his enemies. If Wilder is not in top form, he could be in trouble this weekend. At least this conflict has some interesting elements.

Should Wilder impress on Saturday, it will be interesting to see where he goes from defeating Zhang – as long as he gets that victory. Big fights with the likes of Anthony Joshua and current undefeated champion Oleksandr Usyk could be on the cards. And let's face it, will fans really miss the fourth fight with Fury? It wasn't like the first three battles were boring. They take a heavy toll on each man, however, and no one gets any smaller. Maybe three is enough in this case. However, no matter how things turn out, it can never be said that Wilder didn't keep things interesting.

Source link

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button