Alabaman Deontay Wilder, America's current hope to reclaim heavyweight glory, stopped Nicolai Firtha in round four of their undercard rumble on the Hopkins-Murat undercard in AC.
Nic, who came out and scored a jab that stumbled the Wilder, went down at 1:15 of the first. He went down again at :48, off another right. His nose dripped blood to end the round. In the second, Wilder didn't manage to drop him. Firtha yapped at Wilder, and ate a few jabs and rights but kept his feet. In the third, Firtha got pounded through the ropes but it wasn't scored a knockdown. He impressed me, in that he moved his feet more than I'd expect from a burly, inelegant sort. A massive right, after a jab, sent him down, and he tried to get up, but the ref waved the fight off right quick at 1:26 of the fourth.
Wilder said after that he knew Firtha wasn't skilled, but was tough. He knows he's at the door of mega-bouts, but is willing to be patient. "Every time you come see me, this is what you're going to get, a knockout," he said.
"I couldn't be happer, I was in with one of the world's best," said Firtha after. He maintained he could have continued, and said this is his drug. Doesn't drink or do dope, but loves to compete. Bless him.
Wilder went to 30-0, with 30-0 KOs against the Ohio resident, who dropped to 21-11. Wilder is in a holding pattern, as he waits to see how the Vitali Klitschko situation plays out. Will he fight again, or will Bermane Stiverne and Chris Arreola meet for the vacant crown, with Wilder to meet the winner? In the meantime, he stayed busy.
Who will win #HOPKINSKOVALEV