By Mauricio Sulaimán – Son of José Sulaimán & President of the WBC
It came as no surprise, but there were also many who did not expect the sensational swiftness of the fight between former world heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder and Sweden’s Robert Helenius last Saturday night, as in the very first round it was dynamite ignite, which so characterizes the man from Alabama.
Wilder’s right hand makes him one of the most effective heavyweight knockout proponents of all time and any time.
He “Poleaxed” his rival, who had to receive rapid medical attention, as the Referee immediately discarded the regulation count.
The fight was announced as an eliminator to find a challenger for the current champion of the division Tyson Fury, who will now most likely face the American fireball for the fourth time.
In fact, this briefest of encounters cannot really be considered as a warmup for Deontay, since everything was resolved via the first significant impact, which he landed like a bolt of lightning on his rival.
While it is being resolved when his fight with Fury will be in the meantime, there are other rivals for Deontay to remain active, focused and sharp. Andy Ruiz, or Luis Ortiz or Oleksandr Usyk, although there might be a trilogy between the Aztec, and Anthony Joshua.
A veritable slugfest was expected between Deontay and the robust Scandinavian, but it turned out to be something that did not last a single round due to the impact inflicted by the tall, lean American.
The power of the fighter from Alabama was not diminished in the least, despite the fact that he has lost a lot of weight. Twenty-four hours earlier he stepped on the scale, weighing just 212 pounds, while his opponent was 40 pounds bulkier.
Even though this was not the show that people expected, the appreciative applause thundered, celebrating the impressive victory from one of the most fearsome punchers of any era, who with this victory remains a figure of enormous potent, at a time when boxing has at least two dozen top-tier fighters.
We will have to wait to see and to learn what those who chart and manage Deontay’s career decide.
For his part, Robert Helenius could well meditate retirement. At 38 years of age, and with the knockout that he received on Saturday night, it will oblige him to take a long rest before a new attempt to cross the ropes.
Did you know…?
In 1927, when Jack Dempsey fought the rematch with Gene Tunney in Illinois, before 120,000 spectators that filled the Chicago Stadium building, it amassed the best pay that had been seen in the history of professional boxing up to that point.
The promoter of the fight, the great Tex Rickard, wrote a check for a million dollars for Tunney, who that night, despite having visited the canvas, left the ring as the winner by unanimous decision, so he retained the heavyweight title.
The combat is also remembered as the fight of the Long Count.
It is said that Tunney spent more than 14 seconds on the canvas, when he received one of the tremendous blows that characterize Dempsey.
In the years of Don José Sulaimán, another strong striker emerged. Namely Mike Tyson, with the power of Dempsey, but with a very different style.
However, for my dad, they were some of the greatest and most effective that has been seen at that weight.
He constantly compared both, saying that they were two of the best heavyweights in memory.
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