Stiverne-Wilder Has Stimulated Some Interest In The Heavies

There is a lot of hype and anticipation regarding the upcoming WBC heavyweight title bout between title holder Bermane Stiverne 24-1-1 (21) and top contender Deontay Wilder 32-0 (32).

I suppose that’s because combined they have a 95% knockout rate and of their apparent dislike of each other. The heavyweight division has been in the doldrums with the Klitschko brothers having a strangle-hold on it since Lennox Lewis retired in early 2004. Until Stiverne vs. Wilder the last heavyweight title bout that really had any juice was back in 2011, when Wladimir Klitschko won a 12-round snooze fest over British challenger David Haye.

“I’m expecting a short night because we have bad blood,” Wilder said. “I really want to hurt this guy, and I haven’t felt this way in a long time. I want to show him this is no joke, this is real. This is business. This is the hurt game and my power is real. I told him that I’ll whoop his (butt) and I’m going to keep my promise.”

Wilder, who won a bronze medal at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, has fought a total of 58 rounds as a pro. He’s won all 32 of his fights by stoppage, and to me, something about them just doesn’t look quite right. Some of them looked to have been…in-organic… and it’s obvious that he really has gone untested.

Since the emergence of another former Olympian, George Foreman, who won a gold medal at the 1968 Games in Mexico City and built up a tremendous knockout record before challenging undisputed heavyweight champ Joe Frazier, many heavyweights have garnered a lot of hype because of their so-called power. The difference is, although Foreman was knocking out a lot of journeymen on his march to the title, you could glean that his power was for real and authentic. As it turned out, Foreman turned out to be more than just a once in a generation puncher – actually, he was a once in a lifetime puncher.

On the way up, heavyweight sensations Mike Tyson and David Tua scored impressive early round knockouts and both went on to prove that they really were once in a generation punchers. Even before Tyson won the title and Tua challenged for it, you knew for certain that they were dangerous and just going the distance with them would be a major feat. I don’t get that sense from watching Wilder. It seems he never lands clean and his opponents still fall over themselves going down.

I get the feeling that many boxing observers are hoping he’s a heavyweight Thomas Hearns housed in a 6′-7″ body weighing around 230 pounds with a reach that expands like a 747 airliner. However, the odds of him being Hearns at heavyweight are slim and none, and that’s being polite. Hearns was a terrific boxer-puncher who could attack and/or step back and counter. He also had a missile for a right hand and a debilitating left hook to the head and body. I just don’t see that in Wilder.

If I’m forced to quantify Wilder stylistically, I guess he’s a puncher. He’s not a very good boxer, his balance is lousy and for such a tall guy he’s easy to hit. For me, the question is how much of his power is legitimate? And that’s a really big question. And if Wilder is legit, he should have little trouble against Stiverne, who is very willing to mix it up and should be at the mercy of Wilder’s reach.

Stylistically, I see Stiverne primarily as a counter-punching puncher who can box. I’m not sure how well he takes a shot, and I’m not sure of his work ethic. But I see a guy who can box and punch, who’s totally relaxed in the ring, who keeps his power late into the fight, who’s a pretty strong guy, who has a terrific reach for someone his size, and who hits with both hands. By today’s standards especially, that looks very good in the heavyweight division.

Stiverne vs. Wilder is a very tough fight to handicap because of the total unknown regarding Wilder. If he’s the real deal, with his size and reach, not to mention if his power is legit, he has everything in his physical arsenal to beat Stiverne and provide him a difficult night. If he’s for real it’s easy to see him winning by knockout or decision. However, I can see Stiverne biding his time and then exploding when the time is right and Wilder going out and away like Michael Grant did a decade ago. And that’s what makes the fight so intriguing, at least for me. Whenever there is a fight on the horizon and there’s nothing that could surprise you regarding the outcome, that’s usually a fight you don’t want to miss.

I know this much…If Wilder was to beat Stiverne, it’d revamp my opinion of Stiverne a little bit, and it would totally revamp my opinion of Wilder. One thing I think is safe to say, and that is.. I don’t think this fight will go many rounds.

“Now I can make all my dreams come true, I can make it a reality,” Wilder said. “America is yearning for a heavyweight world champion. We haven’t had a real one since the days of Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield. Everyone just sits back and remembers the glory days. America has been waiting for their champion and I’ve arrived.”

If Wilder turns out to be the authentic article, a bout between him and Wladimir Klitschko for the undisputed heavyweight title on the line would really be something and have many ring observers talking the heavyweights a little longer. And that would be a welcome change. Can you say East meets West?

Frank Lotierzo can be contacted at GlovedFist@Gmail.com

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COMMENTS

-Radam G :

Nice copy with a strong punch. And I'm betting it is stronger than D-Wild's chin. I can see him getting hurt to the body and the head. He won't last longer than it took to read this Thread. I cannot see him going more than four rounds. And a first-round, less-than-a-minute kayo of D-Wild would not surprise me. Holla!


-stormcentre :

What about Anthony Joshua? Does he fit into the picture anywhere? Or is he too green just yet and, perhaps, the Joshua drums are being beaten by the British too soon?


-deepwater2 :

BS's fights against Chris A were more impressive than Wilders entire career. In a vacuum I would pick BS by way of KO 100 out of a 100 times. If Firtha can outbox Wilder at times than BS should control the entire fight. Just some angles to think about TsAH would like a piece of the heavyweight championship more than he likes feeding his lower weight guys stiffs. It would be the biggest boxing moment for tsAH, and that means something. The oldest trick in the boxing book is to soften up a fighter with woman and or money. Beware of the honey traps BS! Don should lock BS up to keep him safe from outside influences. Who will the ref be? Will he let them fight on the inside? If so advantage to BS. If not advantage to Wilder. BS knows all about wilder getting knocked out in the amateurs so will he come in just looking for the KO or will he move his head and box? Don King did not get any options on Wilder so BS will have the full support of Don. I hope that Don sticks up for his fighter and tries to get some advantages for him. I have to pick BS by knockout at this time, as it gets closer and I know who the ref is I might make a change.


-stormcentre :

BS's fights against Chris A were more impressive than Wilders entire career. In a vacuum I would pick BS by way of KO 100 out of a 100 times. If Firtha can outbox Wilder at times than BS should control the entire fight. Just some angles to think about TsAH would like a piece of the heavyweight championship more than he likes feeding his lower weight guys stiffs. It would be the biggest boxing moment for tsAH, and that means something. The oldest trick in the boxing book is to soften up a fighter with woman and or money. Beware of the honey traps BS! Don should lock BS up to keep him safe from outside influences. Who will the ref be? Will he let them fight on the inside? If so advantage to BS. If not advantage to Wilder. BS knows all about wilder getting knocked out in the amateurs so will he come in just looking for the KO or will he move his head and box? Don King did not get any options on Wilder so BS will have the full support of Don. I hope that Don sticks up for his fighter and tries to get some advantages for him. I have to pick BS by knockout at this time, as it gets closer and I know who the ref is I might make a change.
Good scouting report D2. I haven't really followed either guy that much. Was Stiverne a pretty hot amateur? What's his rise through the pro ranks been like? Moved along fast? Slow? Protected. Fed softs? Or has he done it real?


-Froggy :

Nice copy with a strong punch. And I'm betting it is stronger than D-Wild's chin. I can see him getting hurt to the body and the head. He won't last longer than it took to read this Thread. I cannot see him going more than four rounds. And a first-round, less-than-a-minute kayo of D-Wild would not surprise me. Holla!
I agree, I am a bit biased about this since Stiverne is my homeboy via Montreal, contrary to what some have been saying Bermane is about American as Lennox Lewis was, they both trained in the States, smart move, but they ARE both Canadian !


-amayseng :

The worst thing for a big KO killer...........is a slick boxer who has good power and is not afraid to be in that pocket landing combinations. BS by a clear UD


-Radam G :

I agree, I am a bit biased about this since Stiverne is my homeboy via Montreal, contrary to what some have been saying Bermane is about American as Lennox Lewis was, they both trained in the States, smart move, but they ARE both Canadian !
It is all about gettin' in and fittin' in, so that stash of cash won't be thin. When Amateur Boxing of Canada was dishing out the take-care-of-your-arse moolah to Lennox and B-Ware, they were gladly Canadian. As pros their big MONEY was/is not coming from Canada, so they don't see Canada anymore. Another heavyweight champion -- the late Trevor Berbick -- did not do that to Canada, because he got the bucks. But then in the end, Canada deported him back to his native-born Jamaica. Canada is a hotbed of producing heavyweight champions of the world. But it gets no love for it. Holla!


-brownsugar :

All hail the Mounties...... and Canada, one of the most beautiful places in the world.(next to Ohio). Neither my crystal ball nor my stargazer glasses are working properly to predict the winner of the Wilder vs Stiverne battle. So i ground them up into dust and set it ablaze upon my insense dish so I could get a whiff of humility before I made my final prediction. Wilder has been criticized for lacking a steel reenforced concrete chin because he was caught flush by Harold Sconiers early in his career by a punch that he barely survived. Since then the video has been scrubbed off YouTube although it may be found elsewhere on the web. But let's not forget that Ali was laid-low by Henry Cooper early in his career yet went on to force the hard hitting Sonny Liston to retire on his stool, never to be the same again. The Hulking 7ft tall Valuev was buckled by one of the Smallest Heavyweights in the division...David Haye who went onto survive a whole 12 rounds against Doctor Steel hammer... And now Doctor SteelHammer has gone from being one of the most verbally abused boxers due to owning a China chin to a becoming a complete fight who has literally no vulnerabilities. If Wilder was actually KO'd in the amateurs as mentioned in an earlier post he was likely standing up when the referee stopped the fight and walked him back to his corner. Something that has happened to many future champs who competed in the amateurs including David Hayes and Lucian Bute. There is something about the fighting spirit of a man combined with a healthy dose of adrenaline and confidence that makes him greater than the sum of his parts. Wilder is a hair trigger bomber whose best punches are landed after he senses a weakness or an opening. Its not so much that Wilder throws his punches..... Its more like Wilder is releasing a coiled up spring at the slightest anticipation of an opening. Its like air rushing at hundreds of miles per hour toward a pin whole leak in a vacuum. Slip up one time and he will find you. and lets not forget that one of Wilders victims in the amateurs was a Russian who would later become a gold medalist. If you go to the fight expecting Wilder to faint at the first stiff breeze that crosses his chin ...be prepared to be disappointed. Look at late bloomer Bermane Stivernes record. Until six fights ago everyone of his opponents had half as many loses as they had wins..( before Ray Austin) Some had more losses than wins and a few had hardly any experience at all. But Stiverne can box and he does many things inside the ring.. His age is actually a plus instead of a minus and he is stocking nuclear weapons of mass destruction in his arsenal as well. Not the megatonnage that Deontay has but Stiverne has enough explosive power to get it done and he's the more experienced and skilled boxer. However.. Wilder is the most physically gifted and explosive between the two. All I'm saying is whomever you pick you can't be completely wrong. This fight can easily go either way.


-Radam G :

All hail the Mounties...... and Canada, one of the most beautiful places in the world.(next to Ohio). Neither my crystal ball nor my stargazer glasses are working properly to predict the winner of the Wilder vs Stiverne battle. So i ground them up into dust and set it ablaze upon my insense dish so I could get a whiff of humility before I made my final prediction. Wilder has been criticized for lacking a steel reenforced concrete chin because he was caught flush by Harold Sconiers early in his career by a punch that he barely survived. Since then the video has been scrubbed off YouTube although it may be found elsewhere on the web. But let's not forget that Ali was laid-low by Henry Cooper early in his career yet went on to force the hard hitting Sonny Liston to retire on his stool, never to be the same again. The Hulking 7ft tall Valuev was buckled by one of the Smallest Heavyweights in the division...David Haye who went onto survive a whole 12 rounds against Doctor Steel hammer... And now Doctor SteelHammer has gone from being the most verbally abused boxers due to being handicapped by a China chin to a becoming a complete fight who has literally no vulnerabilities. If Wilder was actually KO'd in the amateurs as mentioned in an earlier post he was likely standing up when the referee stopped the fight and walked him back to his corner. Something that has happened to many future champs who competed in the amateurs including David Hayes and Lucian Bute. There is something about the fighting spirit of a man combined with a healthy dose of adrenaline and confidence that makes him greater than the sum of his parts. Wilder is a hair trigger bomber whose best punches are landed after he senses a weakness or an opening. Its not so much that Wilder throws his punches..... Its more like Wilder is releasing a coiled up spring at the slightest anticipation of an opening. Its like air rushing at hundreds of miles per hour toward a pin whole leak in a vacuum. Slip up one time and he will find you. and lets not forget that one of Wilders victims in the amateurs was a Russian who would later become a gold medalist. If you go to the fight expecting Wilder to faint at the first stiff breeze that crosses his chin ...be prepared to be disappointed. Look at late bloomer Bermane Stivernes record. Until six fights ago everyone of his opponents had half as many loses as the had wins..( before Ray Austin) Some had more losses than wins and a few had hardly any experience at all. But Stiverne can box and he does many things inside the ring.. His age is actually a plus instead of a minus and he is stocking nuclear weapons of mass destruction in his arsenal as well. Not the megatonnage that Deontay has but Stiverne has enough explosive power to get it done and he's the more experienced and skilled boxer. However.. Wilder is the most physically gifted and explosive... All I'm saying is whomever you pick you can't be completely wrong.
Nope! D-Wild got kayoed in the amateurs. But it doesn't mean nuffin!' GOAT Ali, the late, great "Smokin' Joe Frazier and "Iron" Mike Tyson got knocked out in the amateurs. And it didn't affect their professional game. I believe that the D-Wild will lose because he has little pro game. But if he wins, more power to him. Holla!


-Pazuzu :

The worst thing for a big KO killer...........is a slick boxer who has good power and is not afraid to be in that pocket landing combinations. BS by a clear UD
I have to watch more tape before I make my pick, but I'll put money down now that it ain't going 12 rounds.


-stormcentre :

I need another Vodka and it's not even midday.


-DaveB :

However.. Wilder is the most physically gifted and explosive between the two. All I'm saying is whomever you pick you can't be completely wrong. This fight can easily go either way. B-Sug, I remember when Frank L. said he would rather be wrong picking Hopkins than picking Kovalev, you wrote - no wrong is wrong. You were right in picking Kovalev. Now you are saying you can't be completely wrong whomever you pick here. Sometimes picking them is not easy, is it buddy? LOL


-brownsugar :

Dave I'm just borrowing a little logic from my grandsons educational program. You've heard of the "CORE" education program. Well according to the teachers a student is not completely wrong if they say 2+2=5 as long as the student can explain the process. Lol.... Yep this one is really hard for me..... Not anything like Bhop vs The Krusher. At first I had Stiverne all the way. But Stiverne gets moody and emotional before a fight... and Wilder behaves like an ax murderer who is about to decapitate someone. You have to give a guy with that type of confidence and enthusiam a couple of points for embracing the biggest fight of his life with so much .....for lack of a better word "Joy". And not the fake kind of bravado conjured up by guys like Chisora. If Stiverne freezes up at any point during the first few rounds while Wilder is on the attack...its over. If Wilder gets clipped being careless its over. I cant wait.


-oubobcat :

I am really looking forward to this fight. There is almost no way this cannot be an entertaining heavyweight fight and I can't think of a scenario in which the fight does not in in a knockout. As for who will win, well I keep going back and forth. The reason is that there is so much unknown about Wilder. He has fought nobody in the pros and developed some bad habits. But is very gifted athletically and appears to have very good punching power. The competition is an issue for Wilder. He has never been remotely pushed or tested as a pro. He has never faced any adversity in the ring due to the competition he has fought. That lack of experience raises legitimate questions and concerns going into such a big fight. What will happen for example when Stiverne puts a little pressure on him and shows he is not afraid to let his hands go? Will Wilder not know how to respond or will he rise to the occasion? I think Wilder is the more gifted fighter but as we know that can only take you so far in this sport. This fight sort of resembles Lomachenko-Russell. Of course, Lomachenko is a much more experienced (amateur) fighter and much technically better than Stiverne. But like Russell, Wilder is jumping way up after fighting a bunch of boxers who never realistically had a chance to win when they faced him. If Wilder rises to the occasion and has a chin, he wins. But if jump from the wading pool to the ocean is too much, well he gets plastered.


-DaveB :

I don't think anyone can know what is going to happen. I think both guys are capable of getting the other guy out and anything can happen. I wouldn't even bet if it will go over four rounds. I'm thinking Stiverne but I wouldn't be surprised to see either guy go in one. Hey maybe there is no wrong pick in this one. LOL Double knockout maybe.


-Radam G :

D-Wild has been telling a lot of lies, perpetrating a lot of frauds, beating up mentally-retarded boxing rejects and going upside a Sin City's ho's noggin and messing up her weave, now Judgement Day is upon him on January 17. Will he pass the test? I doubt it. Two versions of Satan -- tsAH and da Don K -- will be there at ringside boiling with fire and hiding their pitchforks. TsAH's pitchfork will be hidden Sam Watson's raggedly clothing. And da Don K's pitchfork in his royal hair system. Hehe! Holla!


-stormcentre :

I'm having another Vodka and it's past midday of the following day. :)


-Pazuzu :

D-Wild has been telling a lot of lies, perpetrating a lot of frauds, beating up mentally-retarded boxing rejects and going upside a Sin City's ho's noggin and messing up her weave, now Judgement Day is upon him on January 17. Will he pass the test? I doubt it. Two versions of Satan -- tsAH and da Don K -- will be there at ringside boiling with fire and hiding their pitchforks. TsAH's pitchfork will be hidden Sam Watson's raggedly clothing. And da Don K's pitchfork in his royal hair system. Hehe! Holla!
Even for RG, this is straight up gonzo. I love it. Anyway, lotsa folks have remarked upon the quality (or lack thereof) of DW and BS's opposition to date. That they've gotten to this point on a diet rich in tomatoes, so to speak; that neither one has even been in tough. And I was thinking about that while I had some free time today and so I crunched some numbers on Boxrec and found something interesting: in 26 fights, Stiverne's opponents have a combined record of 342-186-20, or an average of 13-7-1 at the time they fought Stiverne. Wilder's 32 opponents had a combined record of 451-213-23...or an average of 14-6-1. If you want to limit it to their more recent work, look at the record for the last six fights of their last six opponents. Stiverne's opposition had a combined record of 21-14-1. For Wilder's opponents it was 20-15-1. So if you're going just by win/loss record, Stiverne and Wilder's opposition has been "almost identically undistinguished". Uncannily so. I just thought this was interesting for anyone who tries to make the point that "(Deontay/Bermane) will win because (Bermane/Deontay) has been brought along soft." In reality, both of these guys have come along on a healthy regime of B and C level fighters. No advantage here in either corner. But, I know. These numbers don't tell the whole story. Wilder's never fought anyone even at Chris Arreola's level. But Stiverne's never fought an elite heavyweight either. Is Wilder elite? We'll have a better idea on January 18th. I still have no idea who is going to win this fight. But once the bell rings, I don't think it will take us long to find out. @stormcentre: this round's on me. ; )


-Pazuzu :

Dave I'm just borrowing a little logic from my grandsons educational program. You've heard of the "CORE" education program. Well according to the teachers a student is not completely wrong if they say 2+2=5 as long as the student can explain the process.
Please tell me this is not true. ...Hell in a handbasket...


-brownsugar :

Please tell me this is not true. ...Hell in a handbasket...
Other countries like Russia had a program similar to Core and threw it out like dirty dishwater. Critics claim its a method to create an obedient workforce. Its wealthy supporters like Bill Gates say its a revolutionary educational tool. But don't allow it to be taught to their own kids. Their kids went to a private schools with a classic liberal arts cirriculum when the educational system started using it. All I can say is read what the the pros and cons are saying....its a heated debate. There's a reason why many parents say they can't understand it and its not because the parents are dumb or undereducated.


-deepwater2 :

Other countries like Russia had a program similar to Core and threw it out like dirty dishwater. Critics claim its a method to create an obedient workforce. Its wealthy supporters like Bill Gates say its a revolutionary educational tool. But don't allow it to be taught to their own kids. Their kids went to a private schools with a classic liberal arts cirriculum when the educational system started using it. All I can say is read what the the pros and cons are saying....its a heated debate. There's a reason why many parents say they can't understand it and its not because the parents are dumb or undereducated.
Common core is a nightmare. It will put students in the USA 2-3 years behind students in other countries. At best it is another huge federal government boondoggle that will suck up billions. At worst is a brainwashing scheme where students are taught to succumb to authority. A file is kept on each child that will follow them for life, religion,blood type and any citations a child receives will follow them forever. Disagree with a teacher on a social studies topic you are then blackballed. Look into it if you want to see a horror show.


-Pazuzu :

Other countries like Russia had a program similar to Core and threw it out like dirty dishwater. Critics claim its a method to create an obedient workforce. Its wealthy supporters like Bill Gates say its a revolutionary educational tool. But don't allow it to be taught to their own kids. Their kids went to a private schools with a classic liberal arts cirriculum when the educational system started using it. All I can say is read what the the pros and cons are saying....its a heated debate. There's a reason why many parents say they can't understand it and its not because the parents are dumb or undereducated.
My kids are a few years away from primary school, but I've heard tons of horror stories. We'll see how it goes.


-deepwater2 :


->http://youtu.be/NzH0NtiM_oA Fighting guys that lost their last 39 fights is more of a detriment than a learning process. Wilder has not faced a good boxer like Stiverne.