Deontay Wilder returned to the ring this month after only one round of boxing in two years, and was subsequently beaten handily by Joseph Parker.
There were some mentions of the American’s inactivity in the lead-up, yet the bookmakers and a majority of pundits picked him to stop Parker inside the distance.
The heavyweight from New Zealand, a former world champion as well, refused to stick to that script. He controlled the pace, took centre ring and attacked Wilder in bursts.
It was a shutout on the cards, and Wilder’s money-spinning plans to face Anthony Joshua are now likely off the table.
Speaking to FightHype, Malik Scott refused to blame the loss on inactivity, instead giving credit to Parker and his trainer, Andy Lee.
“No, in my opinion the biggest issue was Joseph Parker and his trainer and the gameplan that they had, and him not taking unnecessary chances to be hit with a crazy counter like Helenius did.
To me, our problem was Joe Parker. Now, in the mix of that, we have to keep reality reality – he was fighting a guy that literally hasn’t been active in two years. Is that why the loss came? I can’t say that because I’m not into taking credit from fighters that went out there and handled their business like Joe Parker did.”
Wilder wasn’t able to land the sort of shot that his won him 42 fights by knockout, but Scott says even the rest of his game was lacking.
“Even in between times, Deontay couldn’t really get his jab off. He was feinting good but he couldn’t get his double and triple jab off, and we went over that tons and tons of times in training camp and in the dressing room …
This s**t is easier said than done, especially at the highest level. Deontay is a warrior, he went out there and did what he could do under the circumstances of not being able to pull the trigger, and s**t, like be life-ing man.”
The 38-year-old from Alabama has insisted he will fight on and rediscover his killer instinct.