Deontay Wilder saw plans to fight Anthony Joshua crash in front of his eyes when a resurgent Joseph Parker beat him handily over the distance in their December bout.
The American knockout artist looked a shadow of his former self after over a year of inactivity, struggling to pull the trigger against the game Parker, who didn’t let himself into range and took his chances for power shots when they came.
It was rightfully a shutout on the cards and, whilst Parker returns to the heavyweight top table, Wilder loses the opportunity for a long-awaited clash with ‘AJ’ and his career hangs in the balance.
That may be an upsetting fact for fans, but, speaking on Pro Box TV, former world champion Paulie Malignaggi said Wilder sounded happy after the loss.
“Wilder looked old. I feel like he didn’t have a lot of desire. He’s 38-years old … It seemed like inactivity also made a big difference. I just need to see Wilder hungry. I feel like he never really went for it. It seemed like he’s kind of past it. He’s got a lot going on in his life, he’s been very successful.
He sounded happy and satisfied after the defeat, he didn’t even sound dejected or that it bothered him. This kind of thing happens. You get a little older and you have other things going on in your life and you’re just not as competitive anymore.”
Wilder has since confirmed he will fight on, however where, when and against who remains up in the air. There’s no doubt that the 38-year-old needs a statement win.