By Jim Dower: WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder (40-0-1, 39 KOs) weighed in at 223 1/4 pounds on Friday for his weigh-in for his title against against mandatory challenger Dominic Breazeale (20-1, 18 KOs) this Saturday night at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
Breazeale will be enjoying a 32 lb weight advantage over Wilder. That’s less than the huge weight advantage that Wilder’s last opponent Tyson Fury enjoyed against him, and he failed to beat him.
Wilder is 11 lbs heavier for this fight than the 212 pounds that he weighed for his previous title defense against Tyson Fury on December last year. Wilder definitely looked more muscular today at the weigh-in compared to the slender version of hiself that we saw against Fury last December.
Breazeale weighed in at 255 1/4 pounds. That’s about a normal weight for him. He said previously that he was going to come into the fight around 250 lbs., but he wasn’t close to that today. In three out of the last four fights, Breazeale has come into his contests around 255 lbs. The only departure from that was the 263 lbs. that Breazeale weighed for his war against Izuagbe Ugonoh in February 2017. Breazeale was knocked down by Ugonoh in the fourth, and appeared close to be knocked out. However, Breazeale got up off the deck and took the fight to Ugonoh in dropping him twice in the fifth round to score a knockout. If Breazeale shows that kind of heart on Saturday night, Wilder is going to be in trouble.
Much has been made about Wilder’s comments this week about wanting a body on his record, and how he’ll pay for Breazeale’s funeral expenses. The World Boxing Council president Mauricio Sulaiman said the WBC is going to investigate the comments from Wilder. There’s no word what Mauricio and the WBC can do about it. Since Wilder isn’t talking about breaking the rules, it comes down to him making an opinion about what he hopes will happen in his fight with Breazeale. Can the WBC penalize Wilder for stating an opinion? That’s what it comes down to.
“The real issue isn’t what he said. It’s the WBC saying, ‘We want to investigate it.’ This is before the rebuke,” Stephen A. Smith said to ESPN about Wilder’s comments about wanting a body on his record. “You get in the ring, it’s a sport. You know a punch can put you to sleep. You can definitely decry what Deontay Wilder said. The reason this is news is because the WBC saying, ‘We’re going to investigate.’ What the hell is there to investigate? What is the investigation about? He said what he said. You agree with it or you don’t agree with it. You think it’s appropriate or inappropriate, and that’s it. To say there’s going to be an investigation; what exactly are you going to do to Deontay Wilder just because he said those words. Unless he’s talking about breaking the rules…If he goes in the ring, you’re going to expect him to throw his right hand. What if Deontay Wilder was in the ring, and he refused to throw his right hand, and just ran around the ring and didn’t throw punches? What would happen then? They would probably penalize him and without his check, because he didn’t show up to do his job. So what sense is there for the WBC to say there’s going to be an investigation? You can rebuke what he says, and it would be appropriate to do that, but for them to say there’s going to be an investigation of what happened is the most idiotic thing in the world. There is no investigation. He came on national television and said what he said. You either like or you don’t like it, period,” Smith said.
Smith is right. As long as Wilder isn’t breaking any rules during his fight with Breazeale, there’s nothing for the WBC to investigate.
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