Wilder Defends Against Szpilka Jan. 16 On Showtime

DEONTAY WILDER TO DEFEND WBC HEAVYWEIGHT WORLD TITLE

AGAINST POLISH CHALLENGER ARTUR SZPILKA

ON SATURDAY, JAN. 16, LIVE ON SHOWTIME®

FROM BARCLAYS CENTER IN BROOKLYN

Tickets On Sale This Monday, December 14 For Brooklyn’s First Heavyweight World Championship In 115 Years

BROOKLYN (Dec. 9, 2015) – Undefeated WBC Heavyweight World Champion Deontay Wilder will make the third defense of his title against brawling Polish contender Artur Szpilka on Saturday, Jan. 16, 2016, at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, live on SHOWTIME® (9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT).

The 12-round SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING® main event between the power-punching Wilder (35-0, 34 KOs), of Tuscaloosa, Ala., and Szpilka (20-1, 15 KOs), of Wieliczka, Poland, will be the first heavyweight title fight in Brooklyn since James Jeffries knocked out James Corbett in the 23rd round on May 11, 1900, on Coney Island.

Jeffries fought in all three of the Brooklyn heavyweight title fights, which were the fourth, fifth and seventh world heavyweight title fights of the modern gloved era. All three took place on Coney Island, two in 1899 and the final in 1900.

It will be Wilder’s first fight in New York and his ninth overall on Showtime Networks. Wilder is the first United States-born heavyweight champion since 2007.

Tickets for the live event, which is promoted by DiBella Entertainment in association with Warriors Boxing and Sferis Knockout Promotions, start at $25, not including applicable fees, and are on sale Monday, December 14 at 10 a.m. ET. Tickets can be purchased online by visiting www.ticketmaster.com, www.barclayscenter.com or by calling 1-800-745-3000. Tickets will also be available at the American Express Box Office at Barclays Center beginning Tuesday, December 15 at noon. Purchase before January 1 and receive a 10% discount. Group discounts are available by calling 844-BKLYN-GP.

“I’m excited about coming to New York City, I’m excited about displaying my talents and I’m excited about fighting at Barclays Center,” said Wilder. “I want to thank my opponent Artur Szpilka for accepting this opportunity that I’m giving him. I wish him luck – he’s going to need it. I look forward to winning over the Polish fans after I beat him. I know he’s a southpaw and he tends to give up when things get tough in the ring, going off the fight he had with Bryant Jennings. He doesn’t have heart when it gets tough. I look forward to giving the fans plenty of action and excitement on Jan. 16.”

“It feels amazing to get the opportunity to fight Deontay for his heavyweight world title,” said Szpilka. “I can’t wait to be the first ever Polish heavyweight to win a world title. I’ve dreamed about this many times, and now my time has come. I’ll be ready to put on a show for my fans and take his belt from him on Jan. 16.”

“It should be an exciting night on Jan. 16 when the ‘Bronze Bomber’ defends his title, for the first time at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, against rugged brawler Artur Szpilka,” said Lou DiBella, President of DiBella Entertainment. “Brash and outspoken, the Polish fighter looks to derail Deontay and become the first Polish heavyweight champion of the world in boxing history. This is Deontay’s third title defense in 12 months and a victory will lead to a major clash in his next bout.”

“I’m very excited that Artur Szpilka is getting an opportunity to become the first heavyweight champion in the history of Poland,” said Leon Margules, President of Warriors Boxing. “We’re thrilled that Artur will be able to fight for the title in a boxing-rich city like Brooklyn and in front of what will undoubtedly be a strong showing of support from his Polish fans.”

“SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING has been the home of many of the biggest and best heavyweight world title fights of the last 30 years, and we are proud to continue that legacy with Deontay Wilder,” said Stephen Espinoza, Executive Vice President and General Manager, SHOWTIME Sports. “Deontay has used his rare blend of raw power, athleticism and charisma to become one of the can’t-miss boxers of this era. Credit Artur Szpilka for accepting the challenge. Szpilka is a young, strong southpaw with good power and a flair for showmanship, and he is eager to make the most of his first world title opportunity. January 16 is sure to be an exciting night on SHOWTIME.”

“It took 115 years, but Heavyweight Championship boxing is back in Brooklyn,” said Barclays Center CEO Brett Yormark. “I spent some time with Deontay at the Jacobs-Quillin fight last Saturday and he can’t wait to defend his title at Barclays Center, but it won’t be easy. Artur Szpilka is a great fighter and is sure to be well represented by the ‘Little Poland’ neighborhood of nearby Greenpoint. The borough is ready for Heavyweight Championship boxing. It was worth the wait.”

The 6-foot-7 Wilder will be making his third title defense and fourth fight in 364 days. The 30-year-old won the WBC belt with a unanimous decision over Bermane Stiverne on Jan. 17, 2015 in Las Vegas, in his first professional fight to go past the fourth round.

Wilder successfully defended the belt against Eric Molina (KO 9) last June 13 and most recently against Johann Duhaupas (TKO 11) on Sept. 26. Both of the title defenses took place in his home state of Alabama.

The last heavyweight champion to fight four times in 12 months was Lennox Lewis in 2000-01. Lewis was also the last undisputed heavyweight champion.

“I’m looking forward to being the next undisputed heavyweight champion and the most active heavyweight champion in history,” Wilder said. “I’m also active once I get into the ring. In my last fight, I landed an average of 30 of the 53 punches that I threw each round. That was more than double what Tyson Fury and Wladimir Klitschko landed, combined.”

Before turning pro in November 2008, Wilder won the bronze medal at heavyweight for the U.S. at the 2008 Olympic Games. He is the last American male boxer to medal in The Olympics.

The aggressive-minded, 6-foot-3 Szpilka has won four consecutive fights since suffering the only loss of his career to then-undefeated Bryant Jennings in 2014. The 26-year-old rebounded with a 10-round unanimous decision over former cruiserweight world champion Tomasz Adamek in 2014 and stoppage victories over Yasmany Consuegra, Manuel Quezada and Ty Cobb in 2015.

A pro since 2008, the southpaw first gained notice when he stopped the once-touted Owen Beck in four rounds in 2011, then unanimously outpointed former world title challenger Jameel McCline the following year.

Szpilka has honed his boxing skills under the tutelage of Houston-based trainer Ronnie Shields. While he is still predisposed to brawling and coming forward, Szpilka has developed into a more complete fighter under Shields and one that could be the toughest test of the young world champion’s career.

Brooklyn has a deep history in heavyweight boxing, including hometown heavyweight champions Mike Tyson,Floyd Patterson, Riddick Bowe, Shannon Briggs and Michael Moorer. In addition, Brooklyn-native and 1984 Olympic Gold medalist Mark Breland serves as one of Wilder’s coaches.

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Barclays Center’s BROOKLYN BOXING™ programming platform is presented by AARP. For more information visit www.SHO.com/Sports follow on Twitter @SHOSports, @BronzeBomber, @Szpilka_Artur, @BarclaysCenter,@WarriorsBoxingProm and @Swanson_Comm or become a fan on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/SHOSports, www.Facebook.com/DiBellaEntertainment, www.Facebook.com/barclayscenter

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COMMENTS

-Kid Blast :

Hmm. He could of ended Briggs's freak show.


-miguel1 :

I dont want to see Briggs again, even once.


-Radam G :

Wow! But it would have been better for D-Wild to fight a warm old body Briggs instead of another marshmallow. What a darn, bytching marshmallow collector D-Wild is. OMFG! And the last two marshmallows gave him some heat before he burnt them. Dude's mug was all pucked [sic] up with scratches and nanocuts and swelling. D-Wild is a d@mn Houdini of roasting marshmallows. Dude is a straight-up bumdini. He has kayoed all marshmallows and a couple of bums. He could not put away an unhealthy, mild-warm "B-Ware" Stiverne. I don't see nuffin [sic] but super hype and fantasy in D-Wide. I give him an A for being brave enough to try da game and an A for learning to be a master byllsyetter at it. Once he steps up, he gets KTFO. Holla!


-amayseng :

Hmm. He could of ended Briggs's freak show.
why? at least Briggs doesn't put us to sleep. He will fight and go for the kill.


-deepwater2 :

Briggs would be the toughest opponent Wilder has faced so far in his career. That speaks more about DW and his matchmaker.Briggs is head and shoulders above the last two stiffs they put in the ring against DW. Briggs has way better boxing skills than DW even at his advanced age. You must give DW credit for speaking the truth. Artur does give up when the going gets tough. That is exactly why some polish boxer is being served up instead of Briggs ,who would rattle DW's mind and get him emotional during the press conferences. DW will get served marshmallows. the IBF is allowing two undeserving guys to get their trinket, then they will serve that paper champs to DW. Tyson Fury is the heavyweight champion of the world. DW is just a belt holder until he gets a signature win over a live guy. When will he fight a live guy again? He only fought one so far.


-Yogo :

I'd wager 'straight up-bumdini(!)' is the most pampered and protected HW of all times. It's a joke. Only in America is it done so well. Fury's doesn't give a ****. He'll fight any of them anytime. I'd like to see Fury v Pulev/Povetkin. Until DW mans up i'm not interested, but he knows these guys expose his glaring weakness's.


-miguel1 :

Im just not a fan of Shannon Briggs. He is a guy looking for attention and hype, and asking for $2million to fight Deontay means he is just as lost as he always was in terms of his value. He had some talent back in the day, but he wasted it. In the mid 2000's he spent several years half-heartedlty training to do MMA with American Top Team in Florida , but that would require a milliopn to actually get him in the ring. A world title shot? If I was the overlord matchmaker of boxing, I would have stuck Briggs in with David Haye and eliminated one of the two posers right off the bat. There are those that say that Joshua is just as finely protected as Deontay.... Szpilka looks like what he is, and that is a bar bouncer, tough guy who has started polishing his game up. The truth is that Poland is a hot-bed for Lightheavyweight, Cruiserweight and Heavyweight fighters with a lot of ranked guys in those weight classes. Both Glazkov (Ukrainian) and Szpilka have wins over Tomasz Adamek, who was past his prime and small when they beat him, but he was a credible, serviceable win. This whole think stinks of Eastern Euro sponsors paying "sanctioning fees" to move their guys up. This is going to go down like the football scandal one day.....


-Yogo :

Good points all round Miguel. Agreed on AJ being protected so far but he doesn't hold the WBC Belt. That's the difference. Wilder needs to make a statement now if he wants to be great. I really want him to succeed. Boxing needs a true USA HW king right now. I just don't think he can pull it off. Hope i'm wrong.


-deepwater2 :

Briggs accepted 400k. I talked with his team before the offer and after the offer. They never even got an offer when I talked with them. They put me on the phone 3way with an TsAH underling. It might have been an associate of Sam Watson I think. Either way Wilder accused Briggs of steroids and refusing an offer before any offer was made. Briggs -Wilder would sell out the Barclays because of Briggs more than a Wilder. According to most, DW would beat up Briggs. It would be a nice scalp to add to his weak resume. Watch Briggs last fight and watch Wilder's last fight. Tell me who is more exciting and who shows the better skills? Briggs lasted 12 against Vitali with an injury. Impressive feat of strength. The question would be , could DW stop Briggs? Seemed like an easy deal to make. If a Wilder was confident. Wilder is being fed a polish sausage that will quit when the going gets tough. Rotten matchup.


-miguel1 :

Briggs accepted 400k. I talked with his team before the offer and after the offer. They never even got an offer when I talked with them. They put me on the phone 3way with an TsAH underling. It might have been an associate of Sam Watson I think. Either way Wilder accused Briggs of steroids and refusing an offer before any offer was made. Briggs -Wilder would sell out the Barclays because of Briggs more than a Wilder. According to most, DW would beat up Briggs. It would be a nice scalp to add to his weak resume. Watch Briggs last fight and watch Wilder's last fight. Tell me who is more exciting and who shows the better skills? Briggs lasted 12 against Vitali with an injury. Impressive feat of strength. The question would be , could DW stop Briggs? Seemed like an easy deal to make. If a Wilder was confident. Wilder is being fed a polish sausage that will quit when the going gets tough. Rotten matchup.
I can respect your position. Mention steroids and things get ugly. All I can say is Briggs is trying to make up for lost time, and he pissed away a lot of time. Somewhere in there he lost me as a fan, we are gonna have to disagree on this one!


-oubobcat :

I earlier defended the Szpilka fight. And I still don't have issue with Wilder fighting him. However I be very intrigued and much more interested in Briggs. If Deep says Briggs accepted the 400k, I believe him. So why not Briggs? I wonder about the concern for Wilder's chin. It may have been too much risk for the reward for Wilder. Briggs would have gone for broke early. And that concerned Wilder's team, no doubt. So in comes another opponent.


-Radam G :

Briggs accepted 400k. I talked with his team before the offer and after the offer. They never even got an offer when I talked with them. They put me on the phone 3way with an TsAH underling. It might have been an associate of Sam Watson I think. Either way Wilder accused Briggs of steroids and refusing an offer before any offer was made. Briggs -Wilder would sell out the Barclays because of Briggs more than a Wilder. According to most, DW would beat up Briggs. It would be a nice scalp to add to his weak resume. Watch Briggs last fight and watch Wilder's last fight. Tell me who is more exciting and who shows the better skills? Briggs lasted 12 against Vitali with an injury. Impressive feat of strength. The question would be , could DW stop Briggs? Seemed like an easy deal to make. If a Wilder was confident. Wilder is being fed a polish sausage that will quit when the going gets tough. Rotten matchup.
Ditto! True da, true da! "The Cannon" even said that he would "fight that coward for free." And like always, there is a video out to back that up. But, of course, bumdini D-Wild's fanfaronades, groupies and fanboys will be deaf, dumb and blind to that. Proof is not their cup of tea. Holla!