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This week in boxing history, PBC celebrates two of our own champions, remembers a pair of heavyweight title fights featuring a Hall of Fame foursome and looks back at the last lightweight title defense by a multi-division legend.
As the rounds went by, Deontay Wilder waited like a lion in the grass watching a herd of gazelle, anticipating the right time to strike against Artur Szpilka.
Win vs Chris Arreola
Jul 16, 2016 • Legacy Arena, Birmingham, Alabama
Deontay Wilder WINS against Chris Arreola by TKO in Round 8 of 12
Win vs Artur Szpilka 35-0-0
Jan 16, 2016 • Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Artur Szpilka by KO in Round 9 of 12
Win vs Johann Duhaupas
Sep 26, 2015 • Legacy Arena, Birmingham, Alabama
Deontay Wilder WINS against Johann Duhaupas by TKO in Round 11 of 12
Win vs Bermane Stiverne 24-1-1
Jan 17, 2015 • MGM Grand, Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Bermane Stiverne by UD in Round 12 of 12
Win vs Jason Gavern 25-16-4
Aug 16, 2014 • StubHub Center, Carson, California, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Jason Gavern by RTD in Round 4 of 10
Win vs Malik Scott 36-1-1
Mar 15, 2014 • Coliseo Ruben Rodriguez, Bayamon, Puerto Rico
Deontay Wilder WINS against Malik Scott by KO in Round 1 of 12
Win vs Nicolai Firtha 21-10-1
Oct 26, 2013 • Boardwalk Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Nicolai Firtha by KO in Round 4 of 10
Win vs Siarhei Liakhovich 25-5-0
Aug 09, 2013 • Fantasy Springs Casino, Indio, California, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Siarhei Liakhovich by KO in Round 1 of 10
Win vs Audley Harrison 31-6-0
Apr 27, 2013 • Motorpoint Arena, Sheffield, Yorkshire, United Kingdom
Deontay Wilder WINS against Audley Harrison by TKO in Round 1 of 12
Win vs Matthew Greer 15-8-0
Jan 19, 2013 • Centro de Convenciones, Villahermosa, Tabasco, Mexico
Deontay Wilder WINS against Matthew Greer by TKO in Round 2 of 8
Win vs Kelvin Price 13-0-0
Dec 15, 2012 • Sports Arena, Los Angeles, California, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Kelvin Price by KO in Round 3 of 10
Win vs Damon McCreary 14-0-0
Sep 08, 2012 • The Hangar, Costa Mesa, California, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Damon McCreary by KO in Round 2 of 10
Win vs Kertson Manswell 23-5-0
Aug 04, 2012 • Exposition Hall, Mobile, Alabama, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Kertson Manswell by TKO in Round 1 of 10
Win vs Owen Beck 29-10-0
Jun 23, 2012 • Killer Buzz Arena, Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Owen Beck by RTD in Round 3 of 8
Win vs Jesse Oltmanns 10-2-0
May 26, 2012 • Oasis Hotel Complex, Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Deontay Wilder WINS against Jesse Oltmanns by TKO in Round 1 of 8
Win vs Marlon Hayes 23-10-0
Feb 25, 2012 • Scottrade Center, Saint Louis, Missouri, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Marlon Hayes by TKO in Round 4 of 8
Win vs David Long 11-1-2
Nov 26, 2011 • U.S. Bank Arena, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against David Long by KO in Round 1 of 8
Win vs Daniel Cota 17-3-1
Nov 05, 2011 • Centro de Cancun, Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico
Deontay Wilder WINS against Daniel Cota by KO in Round 3 of 8
Win vs Dominique Alexander 20-11-1
Aug 27, 2011 • Water Oaks Farm Arena, Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Dominique Alexander by TKO in Round 2 of 6
Win vs Damon Reed 46-15-0
Jun 18, 2011 • Tuscaloosa Amphitheater, Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Damon Reed by KO in Round 2 of 6
Win vs Reggie Pena 6-6-0
May 06, 2011 • Fantasy Springs Casino, Indio, California, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Reggie Pena by TKO in Round 1 of 6
Win vs DeAndrey Abron 15-6-0
Feb 19, 2011 • Shelton State Community College, Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against DeAndrey Abron by TKO in Round 2 of 6
Win vs Dan Sheehan 11-38-0
Dec 02, 2010 • Hilton Towers Ballroom, Lafayette, Louisiana, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Dan Sheehan by KO in Round 1 of 6
Win vs Harold Sconiers 17-20-2
Oct 15, 2010 • Fantasy Springs Casino, Indio, California, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Harold Sconiers by TKO in Round 4 of 6
Win vs Shannon Caudle 9-0-1
Sep 25, 2010 • Fitzgerald's Casino & Hotel, Tunica, Mississippi, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Shannon Caudle by KO in Round 1 of 6
Win vs Dustin Nichols 4-2-0
Jul 03, 2010 • Club Palace, Hattiesburg, Mississippi, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Dustin Nichols by RTD in Round 1 of 6
Win vs Alvaro Morales 4-7-5
Apr 30, 2010 • Tropicana Hotel & Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Alvaro Morales by TKO in Round 3 of 6
Win vs Ty Cobb 7-1-0
Apr 02, 2010 • Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Ty Cobb by KO in Round 1 of 6
Win vs Jerry Vaughn 2-0-1
Nov 28, 2009 • Duke Energy Convention Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Jerry Vaughn by KO in Round 1 of 6
Win vs Travis Allen 3-4-0
Aug 14, 2009 • Desert Diamond Casino, Tucson, Arizona, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Travis Allen by TKO in Round 1 of 4
Win vs Kelsey Arnold 1-2-2
Jun 26, 2009 • Desert Diamond Casino, Tucson, Arizona, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Kelsey Arnold by KO in Round 1 of 4
Win vs Charles Brown 6-15-1
May 23, 2009 • Duke Energy Convention Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Charles Brown by KO in Round 1 of 6
Win vs Joseph Rabotte 3-5-0
Apr 24, 2009 • UIC Pavilion, Chicago, Illinois, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Joseph Rabotte by KO in Round 1 of 4
Win vs Richard Greene Jr 1-1-0
Mar 14, 2009 • Duke Energy Convention Center, Cincinnati, Ohio, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Richard Greene Jr by RTD in Round 1 of 4
Win vs Shannon Gray 1-0-0
Mar 06, 2009 • Trotter Convention Center, Columbus, Mississippi, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Shannon Gray by TKO in Round 1 of 4
Win vs Ethan Cox 2-2-1
Nov 15, 2008 • Vanderbilt University Memorial Gymnasium, Nashville, Tennessee, USA
Deontay Wilder WINS against Ethan Cox by TKO in Round 2 of 4
Chiseled 6-foot-7-inch Deontay Wilder dropped out of college and turned to boxing in 2005 to support his daughter, who was born with spina bifida. He was a quick study, winning the U.S. Olympic trials in his 21st amateur fight and earning an Olympic bronze medal at the 2008 Beijing Games. After winning his first 32 professional bouts by knockout, Wilder capped his rapid ascent by capturing a share of the world heavyweight title in January 2015.
Like countless other boys born and raised in Tuscaloosa, Alabama, Wilder always wanted to play football or basketball for his hometown University of Alabama Crimson Tide.
However, the 6-foot-7-inch Wilder’s goals changed in 2005, when his daughter, Naieya, was born with spina bifida, a serious birth defect of the spinal cord.
A freshman at Tuscaloosa’s Shelton State Community College at the time, Wilder left school and was soon working two jobs in order to support his daughter, who doctors said might never be able to walk.
In an attempt to earn more money, Wilder took up boxing shortly thereafter and was an extremely quick study.
Fast track to the Olympics
In 2007, Wilder won the National Golden Gloves title in just his 16th amateur fight and also won the U.S. amateur championship at 201 pounds.
He won the U.S. Olympic trials in just his 21st amateur bout, and earned a bronze medal at the 2008 Beijing Games. It was the only medal won by a U.S. boxer.
“His work ethic is incredible and he hits so hard,” USA Boxing coach Dan Campbell said.
Wilder, a.k.a. “The Bronze Bomber,” was simply following the lead of Naieya, who was walking by 2008.
“She’s my inspiration,” he said before the Olympics. “She’s doing so many things that the doctors said she might not be able to do.”
A strong first impression
Possessing tremendous punching power and an 83-inch reach, Wilder made his professional debut in November 2008, gaining a second-round technical knockout of Ethan Cox in Nashville, Tennessee.
Trained by former 147-pound world champion and 1984 Olympic gold medalist Mark Breland, Wilder made quick work of his first 22 opponents, defeating each of them within four rounds, including 14 in the opening round.
Wilder stepped up his level of competition in June 2012, facing former world title contender Owen Beck.
Fighting before a hometown crowd in Tuscaloosa, Wilder floored his opponent in the first and second rounds, and twice more in the third.
He was declared the winner after Beck failed to answer the bell to start Round 4.
Climbing the ladder to greatness
Wilder defeated two straight unbeaten prospects in 2012 to establish himself as a fast-rising title contender.
He knocked out Damon McCreary, who entered the ring at 14-0, in the second round in Costa Mesa, California, in September.
Wilder then gained a third-round KO in December of Kelvin Price, who came into the bout in Los Angeles with a perfect 13-0 mark.
Wilder gained two more quick stoppages in early 2013, including a first-round TKO of former European titleholder Audley Harrison in Sheffield, England.
He then gained the biggest win of his career at the time in August 2013, knocking out former world champion Siarhei Liakhovich with a straight right hand in the first round in Indio, California.
Wilder ran his record to 30-0 in October 2013, knocking down Nicolai Firtha twice in the first round before finishing him off in the fourth in Atlantic City, New Jersey.
Winning a world championship
Wilder put himself on the verge of a world title shot by easily defeating two opponents in 2014.
He gained a first-round KO of Malik Scott in Bayamon, Puerto Rico, in March, and then stopped Jason Gavern in the fourth round in Carson, California, in August.
The win over Scott made Wilder the mandatory challenger for the world championship held by Bermane Stiverne.
Wilder entered the title bout with Stiverne with a record of 32-0 with 32 KOs.
Fighting at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on January 17, 2015, which was also Muhammad Ali’s 73rd birthday, Wilder controlled the action from the opening bell.
Wilder’s superior reach prevented Stiverne from getting inside, and the Bronze Bomber came close to finishing off the champion in the second and seventh rounds.
Wilder failed to keep his KO streak alive, but easily won a 12-round unanimous decision to become the first U.S.-born fighter to hold a heavyweight title since Shannon Briggs in 2007.