MOST people – fans, experts and fellow pros – expect WBC heavyweight ruler Deontay Wilder to have a relatively easy time of things in his next fight, against little-known Frenchman Johann Duhaupas. The September 26th fight will be Wilder’s second defence of the belt he won with an impressive points victory over Bermane Stiverne in January, and bigger fights await “The Bronze Bomber” if he comes through okay.
But Jay Deas, the head trainer of Wilder, says he is not expecting an easy night’s work against the never stopped Duhaupas.
Q: How much do you know about Johann Duhaupas?
Jay Deas: “First of all, I’m interested to hear what Duhaupas said himself about the fight.” [I gave Jay a brief rundown on what Duhaupas said in the recent Boxing News exclusive interview; how the challenger feels he will surprise Wilder, especially if Wilder expects a quick/easy KO win].
“Duhaupas is tough, he is skilled and he is durable. He is also coming off the biggest win of his career (against Manuel Charr). We are directing 100-percent of our focus on him, without a doubt. We’ve brought in our best sparring ever – three different guys for Deontay to work with; three of them at a time. We are preparing hard for this fight; it is a huge event. In my view Duhaupas is a tremendous challenger so we must prepare well to get the win.”
Q: Have you been working with former heavyweight champ Tony Tubbs for this fight?
J.D: “Well, Tony is the coach of Ray Edwards (10-0 heavyweight prospect) and Ray was in town to do some sparring. There are no changes to our camp: it’s Deontay, myself, Mark Breland, Russ Anber and Cuz Hill.”
Q: Do you see Deontay getting a KO win in this fight?
J.D: “I never, ever predict knockout wins. We are working hard, day in and day out, to secure a win. We are not looking past Duhaupas at all.”