Promoter Eddie Hearn claimed Deontay Wilder’s “legs were gone” by the third round of his trilogy-capping fight with Tyson Fury which saw the American knocked out in Las Vegas
The Gypsy King put the Bronze Bomber on the canvas in the 11th round of their historic trilogy fight on Saturday as the 33-year-old Brit defended his WBC heavyweight title in a ferocious back-and-forth affair.
But promoter Hearn, who represents Anthony Joshua, believes Wilder’s “legs were gone” by round three, claiming that it was only the American fighter’s heart which kept him going, having been beaten by Fury in February 2020 following a controversial draw in their first meeting.
“Obviously, Fury caught him with a great shot and went down twice,” he said of the 34-year-old, tipped to retire after his latest loss, when speaking to YouTube channel iFL TV.
“The second one was nothing knockdown, but Fury was still all over the place.”
Wilder bulked up well above his average career weight for the final bout of their trilogy and the extra pounds appeared to be a reason behind him looking sluggish against the Morecambe-based champion.
“Wilder could not stand up, he was exhausted after three rounds, and that’s not normal. Some heavyweights have good tanks,” Hearn went on to say.
“Fury’s tank is exceptional, but you can’t just say, ‘That’s how he is.’ You can’t have a championship fight at any kind of pace if you can’t stand up after three rounds.”
Fury was knocked down twice in the same round for the first time in his 13-year professional career, with his opponent having his share of dominance in the early exchanges.
It was a thrilling finale of their long-running feud, which saw Wilder hit the canvas floor in the penultimate round.
On the matchup as a whole, Hearn said: “Listen, it was a brilliant fight.
“Technically it was all over the shop, but who cares? The drama was unbelievable.
“Massive credit to both fighters. Wilder looked hypnotised before the fight and after two rounds he almost couldn’t stand up.
“He started quite well, but he looked petrified and exhausted before the fight even started,” the Matchroom Sport chairman continued.
“After three rounds he couldn’t stand up and I thought it was all over.”
Although Hearn commended Wilder for keeping going, the 42-year-old also had praise for Fury, who he “wanted to him.”
“He comes back with the equaliser and Fury goes down twice. It was non-stop and full of drama,” Hearn affirmed.
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“I have to give Fury credit, because he dug deep and got the win. It was brilliant for boxing and for the heavyweight division, because we need fights like that.
“I wanted Fury to win. Props to both guys and massive congratulations for Fury, because it was a great win.”
Post-KO, Wilder admitted: “I did my best, but it wasn’t good enough.
“I’m not sure what happened. I know that in training he did certain things, and I also knew that he didn’t come in at 277 to be a ballet dancer.
“He came to lean on me, try to rough me up and he succeeded.”