Deontay Wilder on Anthony Joshua: “I would love to do that fight in Africa”
Former WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder has yet to have his comeback fight – he faces Robert Helenius on Saturday, a year after his brutal losing battle with Tyson Fury in his third fight – but the 36-year-old years old (37 at the end of this month) is making big plans. Wilder, who recently let it be known that he intends to retire at 40, spoke to BBC Sport today, and “The Bronze Bomber” said he would love to fight Anthony Joshua in Africa.
Wilder, who says fans ask him all the time about a Joshua fight, stated that in his opinion this fight, between two former heavyweight champions, “is still the number one fight in the world for everyone.” And Wilder believes that staging the fight in Africa would make the fight a much bigger spectacle. And, as Wilder pointed out, both he and AJ “have roots from there.”
I would love to do that fight in Africa,” Wilder said of a fight with Joshua. “It is still the number one fight in the world for everyone. Everywhere I go, people are always talking about me versus Joshua. We both have roots from there. I think it would be an amazing place to have it, to come home. To return to the homeland. A continent full of our people. I can see that it’s an amazing fight, win, lose or draw. I think we will get respect and love from all the people there.”
So, ‘Rumble in the Jungle II?’ In fact, it would be great to see two fighters, along with a promoter with a vision, bring another big fight to Africa the way Ali and Foreman, and Don King, did so many years ago. Back then, of course, Africans loved Ali, supported him from day one, as soon as “The Greatest” landed in Zaire. I wonder which fighter would enjoy the most love and support from the African people here: Wilder or Joshua?
But wherever this fight takes place, it will/will be a major attraction. And almost certainly an exciting and explosive fight. How could it not be, with the punch that both former champions have at their disposal?
There is still time to make this fight, one that the heavyweight division could really make right now. Ask yourself, is this even bigger than a unification clash between Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk? And, if you could see just one of these two possible fights, which would it be?