WBC heavyweight champion, Deontay Wilder, is heading into a very important fight for his reign as a champion as he will have a rematch with the man he won the title against and the only man to ever go the distance with him, Bermane Stiverne. The rematch with Stiverne is also a hurdle he needs to get past in order to set up one of the biggest fights in boxing, a super fight with IBO heavyweight champion, Anthony Joshua.
In part 1 of my “On The Ropes” boxing radio interview with Deontay Wilder, I discuss with him his feelings on the rematch with Stiverne and what he expects from his mandatory challenger. Wilder also talks about how he’s improved as a fighter since the first bout and if anything short of a knockout would be a disappointment for him. Additionally, Wilder talks about the chances for an Anthony Joshua bout in 2018. Here is what Deontay Wilder had to say.
Jenna J: You have a rematch against the only man to go the distance with you, Bermane Stiverne. How do you feel about having the opportunity to rectify that?
Deontay Wilder: I’m very happy and pleased about the situation and getting to fight him again. I proved myself the first time, I beat him to an inch of his life, like I told him I would do. Now I’m coming to finish the job. Not only do I want to finish the job, he’s my mandatory and he’s been like a fly to my ear. He’s like one of those picnic flies that want your food or your fruit that you have out, but we don’t want to give them none. I’m just ready to get him out of my way, so I can clear my path for other great fights in the future. I’m excited about this fight and I can’t wait.
Jenna J: How much do you think you have improved since your first fight with Stiverne?
Deontay Wilder: I’ve improved a lot, there are a lot of things I have improved on. I’m so smart in the ring, that’s what people don’t understand. People get brainwashed with the things I do in the ring and how I have fun and the kinds of things I’m able to get away with in the ring. Those things have covered up what I really can do because I’m the type of person that if it’s not broken, why fix it? If a guy cannot exploit my weaknesses and he can’t figure me out, then why change up things?
My father always told me to keep people off balance about me, and I do that not only in the business environment but on a personal level as well. I don’t let people know everything about me, you don’t need to know everything about me. You need to know the things that I allow you to know and you go from there. In the ring I’m very smart, my IQ and my intelligence in the ring is very smart and people don’t understand it. That’s why I will never be beaten, no one will ever beat me, I promise you that.
Jenna J: You have had five fights since you first met Stiverne, while he has only had one. Is anything other than a knockout a disappointment for you if you don’t get it?
Deontay Wilder: It won’t be a disappointment for me, whether I knock him out or whether I beat him to death. I said I beat him to an inch of his life last time, this time it may be to the death. Whether I beat him or beat him to death, it’s all a win in my situation. I want to unify the division, I want to see who is the best. I want the ones who feel that they’re the best to come and prove me wrong.
A win is a win to me, whether I knock him out or if I win on points. A win is a win, I’m not going to be disappointed if I don’t knock him out — why would I? If I win, I move on to the next step of accomplishing my goals. I think this fight is definitely going to be a knockout and I can’t wait. I don’t even see how he’s my mandatory to be honest. Might as well put Malik Scott in as my mandatory, he’s been fighting more than Bermane Stiverne.
Jenna J: Anthony Joshua won against Carlos Takam over the weekend. If you win your fight, most fans will want to see you and Joshua fight. Do you think that fight will happen?
Deontay Wilder: That’s going to be up to those guys, we are ready to go. We are ready to go any given time. I’m ready to go after this fight once my mandatory is up and over with. Why not bring us together? But they’re running a business over there in England, they’re running an operation that they don’t want to let go off just yet. They go me on the other hand, and I mess up all the plans.
I’m so dangerous, that’s why they’ve been stalling, that’s why they’re not trying to make the fight. That’s why they have been trying to add popularity and money into the situation to try to block it. Nobody cares about who has more followers on social media, who gives a fuck? This is boxing, when did it get to the point where we care about that?
It’s all excuses upon excuses, but at the end of the day, there’s going to come a time where there ain’t gonna be more excuses, they won’t have many places to run because even the UK fans are going to stop believing their own bullshit.