Boxing Results: Parker Pulls Off Stunner: Outworks Wilder, Shakes Up Heavyweight Landscape
Joseph Parker (34-3, 23 KOs) made Deontay ‘Bronze Bomber’ Wilder (43-3-1, 42 KOs) look all of 38, outworking the gunshy former WBC heavyweight champion, winning a surprisingly easy twelve round unanimous decision on Saturday night in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. The judges’ scores were 118-111, 118-110, and 120-108.
(Photo credit: Mark Robinson Matchroom Boxing.)
Parker had Wilder hurt in the eighth round, bludgeoning him with power shots against the ropes, forcing him to hold. Wilder made it through the round, but his legs looked rubbery and not stable from that point on.
It was the same look that Deontay had in his two losses to Tyson Fury. He looked like he was having flashbacks from that performance.
Wilder had fought only one round in the last two years since 2021, and he looked incredibly ring-rusty. He had no accuracy on his punches and seemed too afraid to throw his right hand, which was his only weapon in his arsenal tonight.
The loss for Wilder ruins the dreams of a mega-fight between him and Anthony Joshua on March 9th, who has a fight of his own tonight against Otto Wallin. It’s still too early to know if the Saudis will want to use the 31-year-old Parker as a substitute to face Joshua in March, as he’s not popular in the U.S.
Trying to sell Joshua vs. Parker on PPV might work with UK fans but not with Americans. They remember too well for his recent knockout loss to Joe Joyce last year. Parker needs to avenge his loss to Joyce because he took a beating in that fight.
Parker’s Persistence Pays Off:
The former WBO heavyweight champion Parker fought smart, boxing, staying out of the way of Wilder’s right hands and nailing him with stiff punches to the body and head.
With throwing virtually zero punches in each round, Parker became more courageous as the rounds wore on, catching Deontay with big shots, and working him over against the ropes.
The defeat for Wilder raises a lot of doubts about his future, as he’s 38, and he looks like he has nothing left in the tank at his age.
“I was written off, but when you do your training, eating right, sacrifices to be away from your family, and when you put in the work, you come in with supreme confidence, momentum, and I got the job done,” said Parker to Boxing King Media after his win over Wilder.
“There’s a lot of talk before the fight about the other fights and other events, but we stayed focused on the job that we had to do and the job that we had in front of us. Nothing annoyed us. It was all part of the process, and it was all part of boxing. We just had to focus on our job, and we got it done,” said Parker.
Fans saw Wilder cruising around this week, driving expensive cars, and shopping, and it gave the impression that he was disengaged going into his fight with Parker like he wasn’t dialed in mentally.
Wilder has made a lot of money in the last five years of his professional career and has a net worth of $30 million. That’s a lot of money for anybody to have, and that could explain why he’s only fought once in the last two years and why he looked unprepared tonight.
Joseph impressed with Wilder’s power
“Stay composed, stay deliberate and throw with bad intentions, and be present the whole time,” said Parker on what his game plan was for his fight with Wilder. “Listen, I could have made a mistake, and he could have caught me.
“He did catch me a few times with his right hand, and he punches very hard. There’s a lump on the back of my head here. He landed a few shots that I was able to block, but the plan was to go in there and stay composed, and when you get the chance to throw your punches, let your hands go,” said Parker.
“I definitely felt his punching power, and like I said, he didn’t catch me clean. I was able to avoid all the big shots he was throwing. It’s all about practicing in the gym and sparring. I had a lot of great sparring in Ireland with amateur kids who got ready for us, and also Tyson.
“Tyson gave me his time and gave me the best champion of the world that I needed to for me to get ready for this fight. I didn’t know what to think. All I knew was to go in there and follow the plan and strategies that I had.
“The few times that I let my hands go and feet, I was behind. So there’s a lot of things that I have to work on. But it’s great to finish the year off a good win, and I look forward to 2024.
“AJ has got the power to finish the fight any round he wants. Otto Wallin came in with a plan, but unfortunately, it didn’t go his way,” said Parker when asked about Anthony Joshua’s fifth round stoppage win over Otto Wallin.
“Yeah, it’s boxing. Anything can happen and it’s a great end of the year,” said Parker, reacting to being told that a lot of boxing fans felt that Joshua and him were finished.
“Anyone. I think they had plans for Joshua-Wilder. We’ll make a plan. I’m ready for everyone,” said Parker when asked who he’ll fight next.