Standing Eight With ... Deontay Wilder

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The "Bronze Bomber" talks strategy and all the things he's worked on as he prepares for his third encounter with Tyson Fury Saturday, October 9, on pay-per-view.

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Five Deontay Wilder Knockouts (In Super Slow Motion)

Deontay Wilder has already amassed a boxing career littered with impressive accomplishments. Yet the former WBC world heavyweight champion believes we ain’t seen nothing yet. 

Wilder will attempt to regain that WBC title when he meets the current champion, Tyson Fury, for a third time this Saturday, October 9, at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, live on pay-per-view (9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT).

The 6-foot-7 “Bronze Bomber” had stopped all 40 men he had faced prior to battling the 6-foot-9 Fury to a split-decision draw in their December 2018 first encounter. Fury (30-0-1, 21 KOs) stopped Wilder via seventh-round TKO in their February 2020 rematch, handing the long-time champ his first defeat. 

Wilder is out for revenge when they meet again Saturday night. 

“We’ve seen Fury’s best – the boxer and the aggressor,” said new head trainer Malik Scott. “But Deontay didn’t go to the body or use the jab like he should have, so in neither of the first two fights have we seen the best Deontay Wilder.”

“You’re going to see those aspects and much more in this third fight of the trilogy. And he’s going to become the two-time heavyweight champion of the world.”

Here’s what Wilder had to say as he winds down camp for the most important bout of his career.   

How has training camp been? 

DW: My head coach is Malik Scott, and [former head trainer] Jay Deas is most definitely in camp.  As always, my training camp is in Alabama, and there’s no place like home.

I go to two places, one of them is the New Era Boxing Gym in Northport, Alabama, and also at Bomb Squad Island, which is my own home estate facility.  

There are no distractions at all. No matter where I go, when I’m in training and it’s time to fight, people respect that and they give me my space.

They’ll speak, cheer me on and they’re with me all the way through. I get motivation, energy and encouragement from all types of people here. 

Are you knocking guys out in sparring?

DW: I’m always putting somebody on the canvas. How often? Every camp I’m dropping somebody, bruising them up or breaking something on their body. 

That’s why, with my sparring partners, we’re always changing them up every week. We switch it up every two rounds. 

Most of my sparring partners don’t go more than two rounds, and then they get out. That way, they can last and we can get the most out of  these guys.

In past interviews, you said “I’m going to be calm but violent.” Explain that.

DW: I’m going to be calm in the ring means that my mind will be clear.  That way, I can quickly release combinations and do the things that we’ve worked on in camp. 

Whether I’m going high or low, I pivot, step to the side, countering, all of that will be executed with a calmness that allows your mind to process. I can’t be overly aggressive like I was in the first fight.

First time around, I only visualized knocking Tyson Fury out, which, in actuality, I did. That’s what happened in the 12th round, so it was ‘Mission Accomplished.’ I just didn’t get the credit. I was too anxious.

What adjustments are you making, mentally and tactically?

DW: This time around, there is going to be a reversal. I’ll be calm and able to see more and react, not only when I’m applying pressure, but also, when my opponent is. 

I’m able to see things and to make a better judgement on what my next movement or counterpunch will be. The violence part means that every single punch will mean something: I want them to hurt. 

When you’re violent, you’re tearing something up. Against Tyson Fury, my punches will be as violent as possible, including to the body. When the opportunity presents, we’re going to test him downstairs as well. 

No heavyweight has a faster, more powerful one-two punch than I do. Former WBC World Heavyweight Champion - Deontay Wilder

Which of your fights best exemplifies your example of “violent calmness?”

DW: When you talk about calmness, you want to talk about the second Bermane Stiverne fight. That was just straight up annihilation.

But everything that I did in that fight, I executed with patience and calmness, from the way I pivoted to the way that I came with the right hand. 

The Bermane Stiverne fight is a perfect example of how you use your power, turning your right hand over and being calm while you deliver that power.

That’s what we’re working on, and we’re perfecting that aspect of my game, particularly in directing all of that power for its most lethal impact behind my jab.   

Will your jab be important in setting things up against the taller Fury?

DW: Absolutely. We’re doing a lot of work with the jab. The jab sets everything up, and I have a great jab when I use it. We have a goal set on how many jabs we want to throw per round.

We’re making it an instinctual muscle-memory, setting  a goal of throwing about 25 jabs per round, but I’m throwing way more than that and I’m doing that without hesitation. 

It’s become extremely fluid and second nature for me. The Dominic Breazeale fight was a good one to look at for the way I can use my jab effectively, and the first fight with Bermane Stiverne.

At one point against Stiverne, I threw six jabs right after one another. Against Johann Duhaupas I showed more of an inside game than anything, but the jab was coming off pretty good. 

How do you replicate the sequential moments which produced the knockdowns against Tyson Fury?

DW: No heavyweight has a faster, more powerful one-two punch than I do, and we’re working on creating, recognizing and capitalizing on that right opportunity behind the jab and combinations. 

My body and my legs are so long that I can cover a lot of space in a short amount of time, so that’s what we’ve been working on, and the two knockdowns against Tyson Fury were definitely at the right moment and right time. 

Can you elaborate, and, if so, how does this fight end?

DW: I was able to clip Tyson Fury in that first fight. The first knockdown was in the ninth round on the top of the head, and the second one was a swift and beautiful three-piece combination -- a jab to the face, right to the head and a left uppercut. Bang.

So it’s not just my power but also my speed. People don’t realize how fast I truly am until they’re in front of me. So we’re going to be calm and create more of those openings.

Then, when the opportunity presents itself, we’re going to be explosive, closing distance, covering a lot of ground, and doing all of that in a very short amount of time. 

I was born with ultimate power, and you’re going to see a rebirth of what happened in the first fight much more efficiently in this fight. This fight is going to end early. I don’t get paid for overtime. It’s going to be a short night.

This fight won’t go five rounds, so don’t blink, because, in the end, my hands will be raised in the air in victory. If they didn’t get the memo and recognize me the first time around, then the second time around, I’m going to make them. 

This is a brand new, reconditioned, rejuvenated Deontay Wilder who is going to re-introduce himself to the world as the two-time heavyweight champion. 

For a closer look at Deontay Wilder, check out his fighter page.

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