In Depth

Deontay Wilder ‘can’t wait’ for undisputed title fight against Anthony Joshua

Bronze Bomber will first defend his WBC belt against Dominic Breazeale in May

Deontay Wilder “can’t wait” to one day face Anthony Joshua in a world title fight to decide who is the undisputed heavyweight champion.

The American, 33, is the current WBC champion while Britain’s Joshua holds the IBF, WBA and WBO titles. But before any undisputed clash Wilder and Joshua have to win their next bouts, which will both be held in New York.

It was confirmed on Tuesday that “Bronze Bomber” Wilder will defend his WBC title against Dominic Breazeale on 18 May at the Barclays Center and last month it was announced that Joshua will make his US debut when he fights Jarrell Miller on 1 June at Madison Square Garden.

The BBC reports that the Wilder-Breazeale fight was ordered by the WBC after Tyson Fury opted against a rematch against Wilder.

Unbeaten with 39 knockouts and one draw from his 41-fight career, Wilder was in confident mood at the press conference with Breazeale on Tuesday. He said: “I hold the keys in the division. I will knock this fool out.”

Breazeale, 33, has only lost once in his 21-fight career - a seventh-round knockout by Joshua in 2016.

Anthony Joshua is the reigning IBF, WBA (Super), IBO and WBO heavyweight boxing champion

Richard Heathcote/Getty Images

Fresh hope

Sky Sports says that despite negotiations stalling between the Wilder and Joshua camps, there is fresh hope that the duo will be victorious in their title defences and can arrange a heavyweight mega-fight.

Joshua is keen to face Wilder and the American said: “Oh man, I can’t wait for him either. I feel the same way about him [that I do Breazeale]. Four months of negotiations and they knew they didn’t want the fight. Stop. What more do I have to do for people?

“I’ve tried to show people and I’ll continue to still prove that I am the best. I’ll continue to give people the fights that they want to see. But they got to be in cooperation with my team as well too.

“Because fighters, I understand, they have choices. They have a choice to make whether to get in there with the man, the myth and the legend.

“I am that man that can knock you out, at any given time, any given round, any given minute, any given second.”

Tyson Fury hits Deontay Wilder during the drawn WBC heavyweight title fight in December 2018

Harry How/Getty Images

‘Wilder does not want to fight Joshua’

Barry Hearn, the head of Joshua’s promoters Matchroom Sport, says that Wilder does not want to fight the British star.

The Daily Mail reports that Wilder rejected a lucrative $100m (£75.8m) TV deal from DAZN which would have included two unification fights against Joshua. However, Wilder decided to stay with US TV company Showtime.

“Wilder rejecting this deal shows what he is thinking,” said Hearn. “Luckily the boxing fans today are smart enough to see that he doesn’t want to get in the ring with Anthony Joshua.

“Nobody does and that’s the problem. He can say anything he wants but it’s obvious to everyone now that this is not coming from our side. Wilder has signed up with Showtime and that makes this fight so much harder to make.”

Hearn added: “We made this offer to try and make it easier but there you go. It’s a shame because Eddie [Hearn] has been pushing so hard to make the Wilder-Joshua fight but it just isn’t there.

“Wilder has been offered $100m but he thinks he can earn good money fighting lesser opponents and then build up the purse to fight Joshua later down the line.

“Fury is the same, he doesn’t want to know. We made him an offer and he turned us down. Neither of them actually want to fight Joshua.”

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