Nearly a year after his trilogy battle with Tyson Fury, Deontay Wilder (42-2-1, 41 KOs) is back in the ring on Sunday, ready to put his detractors to rest.
The 36-year-old, who earlier in the week told media he only wants “three years (more)” in the sport, now squares up against former sparring partner Robert Helenius (31-3, 20 KOs) in an effort to restart his career.
In order to do that, one must first face Helenius, whom Wilder enlisted as a sparring partner prior to his fight with Fury last year.
Although there may be mutual respect, Wilder vowed not to back down from Helenius as he seeks to advance in his career and book a huge match against either Anthony Joshua or Oleksandr Usyk in 2023.
If Wilder prevails on Sunday, he has at least those two opponents in mind, though he might possibly face former champion Andy Ruiz in the championship bout’s decisive round.
While Wilder’s complete attention is currently on Helenius and his forecast that there would be “fire” on Sunday, that might potentially result in another meeting with Fury.
Helenius, meanwhile, said he was “ready” for the contest on Sunday. The 38-year-old is relishing his position as the underdog, despite the attention being on his challenger.