WHILE it was easy to get lost in the hoopla that followed the WBC heavyweight title fight between Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury on Saturday night, please spare a thought for Adonis Stevenson, the former WBC light-heavyweight champion currently in a sedated but “stable” condition inside a Quebec City hospital.
On the same night Wilder and Fury captured the imagination of the sporting world, 41-year-old Stevenson was stopped in the eleventh round by Oleksandr Gvozdyk and suffered injuries so severe he had to be carried from the ring on a stretcher and then later placed in an induced coma.
Thankfully, his condition, initially described as ‘critical’, has since improved, yet the former champion remains in a coma and serves as a sobering reminder of the sport’s dangers.
“The state of Adonis has gone from critical towards stable from yesterday to today which is relatively good news,” wrote Yvon Michel, Stevenson’s promoter. “He is in controlled sedation to facilitate his recuperation.
“His family, his wife Simone and Groupe Yvon Michel would like to thank the many people who have taken the time to send comforting messages.
“New information will be published as we get it. No other comments will be made until then.”
All at Boxing News wish Adonis Stevenson a speedy recovery.
Following their exploits at the weekend, the big question on this Monday was always going to be: Will Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury do it all over again?
All we know so far is this: Fury reckons Wilder, the hard-hitting but slightly fortunate American, who floored him twice during Saturday’s draw, will avoid a return “at all costs”.
“I’ve got a funny feeling he’s going to get his running shoes out and stay away from me,” said Fury this morning on ITV.
“I should have been rewarded with the decision and be taking the WBC belt back to Britain but, unfortunately, it stays in America. We both stay unbeaten and we’ve got to roll the dice again.”
Despite Fury’s doubts concerning a rematch, Wilder’s trainer, Jay Deas, says his preference is for the ‘Bronze Bomber’ to fight Fury a second time before exploring the possibility of a unification blockbuster against WBA, IBF and WBO champion Anthony Joshua.
“If it’s something people would like to see again we would absolutely love to do it,” Deas told BBC Radio Five Live. “Both the guys put on a tremendous fight.
“If it was up to me – and only me – I would like to do the Fury fight first because I think there is unfinished business.
“If the money makes sense in the UK I would love to do it there. Deontay has never had a problem with travelling. That’s not the issue at all.”
Frank Warren, meanwhile, Fury’s current promoter, very much likes the idea of hosting Wilder vs. Fury II in England.
“You’d think they’d want the rematch,” he told Press Association Sport. “They’ve said they do.
“I think it’s got a good chance of coming to London. You’d have a 90,000 gate at Wembley, so you’re talking serious money. But with Tyson, he’ll travel – he’ll go where the money is, for March, April.”
Whatever the reasons for and against it happening next, the decision to run it back or not will ultimately depend on whether it makes financial sense for both men.
If it does, rest assured we’ll be seeing Wilder and Fury in a ring again next year, trading bombs and getting stinking rich. And nobody will complain.
If, however, Anthony Joshua can free himself up to get involved, and offer either Wilder or Fury more money for a date with him at Wembley, there might no longer be such a pressing need to clean up the mess left from Saturday night’s bitterly disappointing draw. Instead, there might be other – better ways – for them all to make money.