WBC heavyweight champion Deontay “The Bronze Bomber” Wilder has successfully defended his title five times since winning it by unanimous decision in a 2015 bout with Bermane Stiverne. The last title defense was in February of this year against Gerald Washington when Wilder won by TKO in the 5th round in his hometown of Birmingham, Alabama. Since that fight, there’s been questions about who Wilder would fight next. Well, we now have our answer.
Today, Showtime Boxing announced that Wilder will return to the ring in early November and put his belt and undefeated record on the line when he squares off with fellow unbeaten heavyweight Luis “King Kong” Ortiz at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. This will be Wilder’s second title defense at the Barclays Center and the first time that Ortiz has fought there. The two fighters appeared at a press conference today announcing the fight and weighing in on what to expect come November 4th.
“Wilder-Ortiz will be the 23rd live boxing fight on Showtime this year. They’ve been big fights, not just a big name fighting a nobody. 16 times we’ve featured an undefeated fighter against another undefeated fighter. But, we may have saved the best for last,” said Showtime Sports executive vice president Stephen Espinoza in his opening remarks. “We’ve got two Top 5, maybe Top 3 heavyweight fighters in the world, depending on which rankings you look at, fighting each other. Their combined record is 65-0 with 60 knockouts. I know Deontay wants to unify the division, and the fans and the media want to unify the division. The only way to do that is to have the best fight the best and that’s what’s happening on November 4th.”
Wilder, known for his outspoken personality, wasn’t shy about what fans should expect come November, predicting that he will end the fight early via knockout.
“I am the best, I am the toughest heavyweight in the division. I don’t care what anybody else has going on in their country. You have to come through me,” said Wilder. “On November the 4th, Deontay Wilder vs. Luis Ortiz, it’s going to be a hell of a fight. This is going to be a crazy fight. And it’s going to be a fight that it definitely ain’t going to go the distance. I’m thinking about three rounds. Come that night, it might be in the first round, you never know.”
Ortiz couldn’t make it to the press conference in New York due to inclement weather related to the hurricanes that have been sweeping through the Caribbean region over the last few days. However, he did make an appearance via phone and through a translator, volleyed right back at Wilder over his expectations for the fight.
“He says Wilder does a lot of talking that Wilder sounds nervous and he thinks he’s (Wilder) taking the fight because there’s nobody else to fight,” said Ortiz’s translator. “He does feel that Wilder’s not going to come out and knock nobody out in the first round or the third round. He feels that Wilder’s going to be doing a lot of running and that he should be careful about what he says about knocking somebody out because he’s (Wilder) going to do a lot of running and embarrass himself.”
The trash talking is sure to only intensify as the two fighters gear up for the November 4th fight night when the fight will be presented live on Showtime beginning at 9 p.m. Eastern Time, available to all Showtime subscribers. You can watch the full press conference below.