Big Fight Preview & Prediction: Wilder vs Breazeale
The big 4 in the world heavyweight title picture all have fights coming up over the next few months.
The likes of Anthony Joshua, Tyson Fury, Dillian Whyte and Deontay Wilder are all in action, but when much of the debate is about which fight is the least one-sided, it highlights the low expectations and the problems within the division that once promised so much.
First up at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn is Deontay Wilder making the latest defence of his WBC world heavyweight title against Dominic Breazeale.
We can all debate or blame why Wilder isn’t facing Joshua, Fury or Whyte, but we are where we are as they say.
Wilder after desparate struggles with his most recent opponents Luis Ortiz and Fury, will look to get back some momentum and send out a warning to his heavyweight rivals.
In both fights Wilder looked on the verge of defeat, but his great equaliser saved him. To his credit Wilder showed heart to rally and save his title, but the flaws were clearly exposed, and many will argue that only the judges saved him against Fury.
All the 4 heavyweights vying for undisputed supremacy have been shown to be vulnerable and sooner or later some if not all will taste defeat.
The question is will that be against each other or someone on the outside who will gatecrash the party and leave the beaten fighter/s and their team wishing they had made the ‘real’ fights the fans really want and taken the huge money seemingly on offer.
Wilder (40-0-1) is strongly favoured to beat Breazeale, but is the champion ready to be taken.
Ortiz and Fury came mightily close, and Wilder hasn’t in truth looked impressive for some time, and against less than top quality opposition.
Have Team Wilder realised that their time is nearly up, protect rather than gamble. Less is more, not in this case the boxing fans will say.
Breazeale (20-1) gets his second chance at the world title, the supposed mandatory challenger, 4th ranked and you get the gig.
Joshua stopped Breazeale in 7 rounds back in 2016 in a one-sided fight. The American was brave but never remotely threatened Joshua. Three wins since and Breazeale finds himself in the mix again, deservedly so or not.
Nothing on his record or his recent performances suggests Wilder will have much to fear from his opponent, a match made in heaven. But Wilder would have thought the same about Fury, the pantomime build-up suddenly turned into a titanic struggle where he was badly outboxed at times by an inspired opponent looking for his own redemption.
Wilder might look to do what he did to Bernard Stiverne in their rematch. Stung by the recent criticism, Wilder will look to impress, a statement to make, he needs to.
However, I see Breazeale having some initial success, and could have an early lead, but at some point Wilder will land and the end will then not be far away.
I don’t see it going the distance, a stoppage win for Wilder between rounds 5 and 7 looks a good bet.
Despite the public disdain I don’t see things changing in the near future. Should the results go as planned over the next few months, come the fall and the next round of hearsay, we will go again.
Wilder will probably face Ortiz again, Fury will dance and clown with another ‘feared’ unbeaten top heavyweight ranked inside the top 50 in the world. Whyte will stick to what he believes he is worth, then take a non title fight for less, and another Matchroom fighter will get Joshua.
Fight fans will then be wishing they had a time machine so they could experience first hand those famous nights in Zaire and Manila, undisputed champion, sadly not anytime soon.
Photo from Amanda Westcott/SHOWTIME