What to make of Wilder?
DEONTAY WILDER got there in the end. In Eric Molina he took on a humble opponent for his first defence of the WBC heavyweight title, a man who had been stopped in a round by Chris Arreola. It is good to see Wilder, who picked up a hand injury winning the belt against Bermane Stiverne, keeping so active. But the problem with taking a soft touch is Wilder needed to deal with him quickly, and impressively, just to meet expectations. Nine rounds was too long.
Wilder’s rise was built on a succession of hassle-free stoppage victories but his team insisted all the questions about him were answered in his world title winning performance. Then he did demonstrate he could box for 12 rounds, and didn’t necessarily have to knock everyone out. But questions return to haunt Wilder. He’s an exciting character, he now has a portion of the heavyweight crown but is he good enough to become American boxing’s next superstar?