For the second time in as many months, heavyweight world titlist Deontay Wilder has talked about potentially retiring from the sport of boxing.
In September, Wilder sounded off on Instagram in an emotional reaction to the news that former interim heavyweight titlist Luis Ortiz had failed yet another drug test.
“If possible, I still want this ape [expletive] head on a platter,” Wilder said. “I’m well acknowledgeable that’s Ortiz is taking something, but I accept all responsibility that may occur in the actions of this fight. I’m really considering walking away from this sport I love so much.”
Wilder doubled down on his comments on Tuesday. The 2008 Olympic bronze medalist, confident of victory, said that if he does not walk away victorious in his fight against former titleholder Bermane Stiverne that he will retire.
“Y’all can quote me on this. Y’all can put this on paper. Y’all can put this at the top of the headlines, because the way I’m feeling about boxing right now, if Bermane Stiverne beats me, I will retire. You can put that down,” Wilder said during a media conference call about the rematch. “I will be out of the way. Boxing ain’t gotta worry about me no more [if I lose] because it ain’t really doing me no good anyway. Nobody wants to fight. All I wanted to prove is that I am the best and the best don’t want to fight, so what’s the point of me being in this sport?
“If Bermane beats me, y’all won’t have to hear about me no more. I’m done. It don’t get more serious than that, so let the games begin.
Wilder (38-0, 37 KO’s), who celebrated his 32nd birthday on Sunday, easily outpointed Stiverne to win the WBC world title in January 2015, and will face him once again in a mandatory rematch on Nov. 4 (Showtime) at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
Stiverne (25-2-1, 21 KO’s) 38, hasn’t fought for nearly two years. He was training on the undercard to fight fringe contender Dominic Breazeale but agreed to take on Wilder after Ortiz (27-0, 23 KO’s) tested positive for two banned diuretics, chlorothiazide, and hydrochlorothiazide, in a random urine test conducted by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association on Sept. 22.
The 6-foot-7, 225-pound Wilder also missed out on an opportunity to fight Alexander Povetkin when the Russian tested positive for meldonium nine days before a May 2016 mandatory title defense. The fight was ultimately canceled, and Wilder went on to stop Johann Duhaupas. Then, in February, Wilder’s slated title defense against Andrzej Wawrzyk was also slashed after the Pole failed a VADA test. He was replaced by Gerald Washington, who was knocked out in the fifth round by the American.