Unfortunately for boxing fans, the fight between Luis Ortiz and Deontay Wilder has been called off. Ortiz tested positive for banned substances and is no longer aloud to challenge Wilder on November 4th. Thankfully, Bermane Stiverne has stepped up to the plate.
Bermane Stiverne is a former WBC heavyweight champion. In January 2015, Stiverne and Wilder faced off in what would be a very entertaining fight. There was a lot of trash talking inside the ring, and both fighters landed some head-turning punches. This would be the only fight of Wilder’s career to go the distance. Wilder won a unanimous decision against the then-WBC champion. Even though Stiverne landed some impressive strikes, he was completely outclassed.
Wilder is the taller fighter. At 6’7”, Wilder capitalized on a five-inch reach advantage. Stiverne was the heavier fighter at 239 pounds, which was 20 pounds more than Wilder at the time of their first meeting. Wilder was quicker and much more active. He landed 227 out of 621 punches. Stiverne threw 327 and landed only 110.
Deontay Wilder claims to have suffered a broken hand in the third round. This could explain the reason Wilder was unable to get the finish. Stiverne is the only blemish on Wilder’s seemingly perfect record. In 38 fights, Wilder has 37 brain-rattling knockouts; five of which have happened following the Stiverne fight. In comparison, Stiverne has been very inactive. The former champion has had only one fight since facing Wilder, and hasn’t fought in nearly two years. In his rebound fight, Stiverne boxed his way to a unanimous decision despite being knocked down in the first round. This will be an uphill battle for Stiverne, as Wilder is more skillful than before.
Many boxing fans want to see Wilder face a more formidable opponent. However, the blame falls on dirty pee samples. Luis Ortiz is an absolute nightmare. Wilder paid Stiverne, who had a mandatory rematch, to step aside in order to face Ortiz. This shows Wilder’s desire to fight the top guys. Hopefully, a super heavyweight fight between Wilder and Anthony Joshua will manifest itself in the near future. Until then, let the resume building of Wilder continue.