On Saturday night at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, the boxing world crowned a new heavyweight champion in shocking, dominating fashion.
The champion, Deontay Wilder came to the ring sporting an all-black, knight-like sheet of armor with a crown and mask that lit up red around his eyes while being accompanied by hip-hop artist D Smoke. Wilder, nicknamed the Bronze Bomber has made masks and heavy armor-like attire part of his usual pre-match ensemble and his outfit last night surely did not disappoint.
The challenger, Tyson Fury, came donning a crown and royal mantle while being carried on a thrown to center stage Fury, nicknamed the Gypsy King wanted to make a statement and was surely heard. In a way, this act of showmanship was to be expected but I don’t believe anybody would have guessed that it would be flaunted to that magnitude.
These two boxers are very well known as confident, sometimes cocky, charismatic titans of the sport and love to show it off. The over-the-top show on their ways to the ring was just a sample of how big this fight meant to both of these men and boxing fans everywhere.
Fury and Wilder had fought once before for the Heavyweight belt in December of 2018 at the Staples Center, the contest was ruled a draw. Seen by many as controversial, there was no denying that the two giants went toe to toe for all 12 rounds and were seemingly even. Wilder scored the only knockdown of the fight but it was not enough to move the decision in his favor. Fast forward 14 months and the undefeated big men were back on a collision course with each other for the whole World to see.
Most fans wish this would have been a close battle like the prior, but quite frankly, this fight was not very close at all. Tyson Fury dominated from the very first punch. Fury wanted to take a new approach to the fight by keeping on the attack and forcing Wilder to the outskirts of the ring. Wilder’s greatest strength is being able to control the center of the ring using his long reach advantage and his powerful right hook.
Wilder was consistently playing defense to a Tyson Fury onslaught that would not stop. While staying within close quarters, Fury continually forced Wilder into clinches near the ropes which took a toll on Wilder’s stamina very early. Deontay was able to land a few meaningful punches in the first couple of rounds but primarily was just trying to protect himself from the pressure Fury was applying.
The match ended in the seventh round when Deontay Wilder’s corner threw in the towel. Wilder was confused as to why the decision was made in the moment but it was very obvious that he was taking too much damage and was unable to create any offense of his own. It was a very smart maneuver for his corner to spare any more unnecessary damage.
After a short celebration with his team and an in-ring interview, the new Heavyweight champ Tyson Fury ended the night by singing “American Pie” while the crowd at MGM joined in, a truly fun and entertaining moment.
Boxing fans everywhere are hopeful that the Gypsy King and Bronze Bomber will once again face off head to head in the ring to decide who the true Heavyweight Champion of the World really is.