For an undefeated fighter who has a world title and knocked out nearly everyone he has faced in his career, Deontay Wilder still has something to prove.
Wilder (39-0, 38 KOs) has made a litany of boxers in the heavyweight division look helpless against his ferocious power, but his critics will note that even with nearly 40 fights under his belt, he hasn’t truly been challenged.
To his credit, the 32-year-old has stayed committed to seeking out an opponent with proven skill, and he will likely get a chance to show he’s more than just a walloping right hand when he takes on Luis Ortiz on Saturday night.
Ortiz (28-0, 24 KOs) was supposed to challenge Wilder for his WBC world heavyweight title in November, but the WBC dropped him after a positive drug test.
That led to Wilder demolishing Bermane Stiverne with a first-round knockout instead, a spectacle that was more of an opportunity for the former to let out his frustrations than an actual competitive boxing match.
Now, the two dangerous punchers are set to clash in what is one of the better fights that can be made in a largely depleted heavyweight division.
Here’s how you can check out the action.
Wilder vs. Ortiz Fight Info
When: Saturday, March 3 at 9 p.m. ET
Where: Barclays Center in Brooklyn
TV: Showtime (U.S.), Sky Sports Main Event, Sky Sports Action (UK)
Live Stream: ShowtimeAnytime, Sky Go (UK)
When we last saw Wilder, he was busy turning Stiverne into a personal punching bag. He knocked the 39-year-old down three times in the first round and barely had time to work up a sweat before delivering a final punishing blow.
Here is it, per Showtime:
Just like that. @BronzeBomber KOs Stiverne in the 1st. #WilderStiverne2 https://t.co/r6PY4Mxx47
11/5/2017, 9:49:14 AM
The bout looked like it never should have happened, even though Stiverne is the only fighter to go the distance with Wilder. That bout was in January 2015, but the Haiti-born boxer looked a shell of his former self four months ago.
Wilder was in the same kind of form that helped him shred the likes of Gerald Washington, Chris Arreola and Artur Szpilka in recent bouts.
The Alabamian isn’t lacking for confidence going into this one. He’s expecting to do to Ortiz what he has done to so many other fighters who have stepped into the ring with him.
“When I think about Luis Ortiz, I see threes. It’s a magical number. I see a third-round knockout,” Wilder said, per BoxingNews24.com’s Allan Fox. “I’ve done what I’ve said so far, and I haven’t let anybody down. I will knock him out and then I will unify the division.”