Like all others with an eye on boxing, Terence Crawford believes that Deontay Wilder’s power is not to be taken lightly – and he wants to make that clear to a certain fighter who’s been calling him out.
‘The Bronze Bomber’s knockout-to-win percentage is 97.3% and even in his two losses to Tyson Fury he floored the Brit. 35 of his 42 stoppages have come in the early rounds, and plenty showcase one-punch power.
After holding the world heavyweight title for half a decade, Wilder was relieved of it from Fury, but delighted fans of the division by deciding against retirement.
One name he’s been mentioned alongside recently is Francis Ngannou – a knockout artist himself, albeit from the world of mixed martial arts.
Crawford – a three-weight world champ with a good number of stoppages himself – has warned Ngannou to reconsider. He spoke on the subject in an interview with the MMA Hour.
“If he hits you, you’re going to sleep. Deontay Wilder, he hits you, you’re going to sleep. Tyson Fury, he went to sleep and woke up. I don’t see too many other guys doing that. Deontay Wilder is one of the biggest punchers ever, so just keep that in mind.”
‘Bud’ went on to praise the MMA star, and advised him to dip his toes in the water with some lower-level fights to see how he suits the sport.
“Listen, that guy is a puncher. He’s doing his thing in MMA, but it’s different over there, calling out the top heavyweights of the world today. I don’t see him having a chance with either one of those guys, and that’s just being honest.”
“He’s got some skills. I would tell him, get your feet wet, try to fight some of those lower-tier guys first, just to feel yourself out, and get used to being in the ring, going rounds.
It’s different. MMA and boxing are different. So just get used to some people with skills coming back at you and out-thinking you, the whole realm of boxing, before you go over there and try to mess with those guys.
Because one guy that you’re going to get one shot — and if you mess up, you’re going to be knocked out into next week for messing with — [is] Deontay Wilder.”
The prospect of a crossover fight has dampened recently, or at least put on the back burner. Ngannou still wants to box, but has also signed with another MMA promotion – the PFL – after splitting with the UFC.
As for Wilder, he’s gearing up for a long awaited clash with Anthony Joshua this December.