Wilder Thing…Groovy

By Robert Ecksel on February 27, 2017
Wilder Thing…Groovy
The WBC has ordered a mandatory rematch between Wilder and rusty Bermane Stiverne.

One can chalk it up to youthful indiscretion, the prior incident was in 2013 and Wilder was only 27 at the time…

Saturday night at the Legacy Arena in Birmingham, Alabama, WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder and heavyweight contender Dominic Breazeale fought on the same card. Both fighters defeated their respective foes by knockout, setting up, some had hoped, while other feared, a fight between the two men. But the WBC put a kibosh on that possibility, ordering a mandatory rematch between Wilder and the man he defeated two years ago to win the title, Bermane Stiverne.

Since that defeat in 2015 Stiverne has had exactly one fight, against 30-10 Derric Rossy in November of that year. How that qualifies Stiverne as a suitable, let alone acceptable opponent for Wilder, who has repeatedly said “I want to unify the division,” is anyone’s guess.

One situation where no guesswork is necessary concerns the dustup between the aforementioned Dominic Breazeale and Deontay’s younger brother, Marsellos Wilder, both of whom were sitting ringside Saturday night.

Altercations in the crowd during fights are nothing new. What is new, according to Breazeale, is that after the fight members of Wilder’s entourage, apparently egged on by the champ, attacked him and his team, in front of his wife and kids no less, at The Westin Birmingham across the street from the arena.

The Birmingham Police Department was called in to restore order and there were no arrests. But Breazeale, at the risk of losing his now illusory shot at the title, took to Instagram Sunday morning to give his account of the goings-on.

“First off, I want to take the time to thank God that both me and my opponent came out of the fight unharmed and safe last night,” he wrote. “Secondly, I want to address the fact that Deontay Wilder and a mob of about 20 people unprovokedly attacked my Team and my family in the lobby last night. My coach and I were blindsided by sucker punches and my team was assaulted as well in front of my wife and kids. This cowardly act has no place in boxing and believe me will not go unpunished.”

For those who have been touched by Wilder’s back-story and the many tears he has shed concerning his daughter’s health, it may be hard to believe that the Gentle Giant from Tuscaloosa could possibly be involved. But this would not be the first time Wilder came to the attention of the law, and if history is any guide, it may not be the last.

One can chalk it up to youthful indiscretion, the prior incident was in 2013 and Wilder was only 27 at the time, but on May 4 of that year Wilder was arrested in Las Vegas and charged with domestic battery by strangulation, a felony, and released on $15,000 bond.

That incident concerned a female acquaintance of Wilder’s who he mistakenly thought was stealing from him. Rather than call the cops, which any sensible person would have done, Wilder took matters into his own hands with unsurprising results. The woman suffered a cut lip, a possibly broken nose, swollen eyebrows, and red marks around her throat. She was treated at the University Medical Center of Southern Nevada and released.

Wilder’s attorney Paul Patterson told the Tuscaloosa News at the time that “Deontay instinctively acted under the false impression that someone was stealing from him. That wasn’t the case. He regrets his actions. He is extremely regretful because this is not consistent with his reputation. He and the victim have spoken about this and the victim has accepted his apology.”

Perhaps that apology was all it took for the woman to forgive him and not press charges. Perhaps money changed hands. In any event, the incident was buried and all but forgotten.

That of course is old news and should be treated as such. The new news is that it looks like Wilder’s next opponent is Bermane Stiverne, which is hardly a cause for celebration.

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  1. The Tache 12:33pm, 02/28/2017

    I’m surprised that Wilder hasn’t tried to get Zelenoff installed as his next mandatory. OK, he weighs about 10 stone and is a fantasist with real mental health issues, but is he really that far removed from Wilder’s usual quality of opposition?
    Until Wilder fights someone half decent, and credit for being at least willing if unable to go to Russia for Povetkin, he will continue to be in my eyes nothing more than another ‘champion’ slowly killing general public interest in boxing.
    His opponents since winning the belt are somewhat of a disgrace to the idea of number 1 contender.

  2. Moon Man 09:10am, 02/27/2017

    First it was mentally challenged internet troll, Charlie Zelenoff, that was pummeled by Wilder. Now, Wilder has started beating up women for sport. Class act. Another woman beater in the sportsworld.

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