WATCHING Deontay Wilder box, he does seem to do a lot wrong. He throws wide arm shots, reckless swings. He lunges forward, off balance, he jumps off his feet, he gets caught. And yet it seems to work. He’s knocked out everyone he’s boxed, even if he needed a second run at Bermane Stiverne, hammering him easily enough inside the first round when they rematched this month.
You’d think Anthony Joshua, the unified IBF and WBA, would be too big, too technical and too skilful for the confident American. Yet there’s an argument for why Wilder is a real threat. David Price, the former British champion and Olympic medallist, is as shrewd an analyst of heavyweight boxing as there is. He explained to Boxing News why Wilder is a danger.
“For what it’s worth, before I watched Joshua against [Carlos] Takam, I fancied Joshua to wipe the floor with Wilder. But now I think Wilder at long range would beat Joshua to the punch. Joshua’s mid range and close range work is brilliant. But at length he doesn’t seem to get his shots off as quickly and I think Wilder would be in with a good chance of knocking him out,” Price said. “Not only that, Anthony Joshua is a textbook boxer and conventional textbook fighters are easier to read unlike Deontay Wilder, who will do things out of the ordinary that you’re not expecting.
“He does things bit unorthodox. If you’ve been fighting decent level fighters who do everything as textbook, it’s quite easy to read. You throw a jab, then you throw a right hand. You see it coming. You read it a bit quicker then what Deontay Wilder does with them mad swings especially. Interesting all the same. I think Wilder could beat him. That’s just my opinion.”
But Wilder, the WBC heavyweight champion, and Joseph Parker, the WBO titlist, need to be realistic to get their chance at fighting Anthony Joshua. “They’re both bringing something to the table which Joshua wants and needs, so they’ve got a point. But they have to admit the main money man in this is Joshua. Parker’s willing to concede 10% extra to Joshua, I think that’s out of the question. I don’t think he generates anywhere near as much as what Joshua generates and if he believes he can beat him, what’s 10% in the grand scheme of things with that much money? I’d just go for it. You don’t know many people are wanting their cut out of Joseph Parker’s money and that’s why they’re trying to get that extra bit,” Price said.
“With Wilder, if Wilder was bigger in America, and this is why I don’t think the fight will happen soon, because I think they’re going to try and get the fight and the fighters more known in America, Wilder, Joshua. Because the pay-per-view in America will take it to another level and I think that fight won’t happen until it’s pay-per-view in America and you’re talking the McGregor-Mayweather numbers. That’s what you could be aiming for. But then there’s the fact that they’re both heavyweights and anything can happen. In the meantime, while they’re trying to build it, one could get knocked out.”
If Price were to get the fight with Tyson Fury that he wants, a victory could catapult him into the big time and maybe even a heavyweight world title fight himself. The Liverpudlian though is cautious. “I come back, I’ll be happy to win a British title,” he says, “but let’s see what happens.”