Wilder blaming ring-walk costume for Fury defeat a 'poor excuse'

Frank Warren has been left puzzled by Deontay Wilder's excuse for his loss to Tyson Fury in Las Vegas in the WBC heavyweight title.

Published : Feb 25, 2020 18:00 IST

Deontay Wilder prior to his fight with Tyson Fury
Deontay Wilder prior to his fight with Tyson Fury

Deontay Wilder prior to his fight with Tyson Fury

Deontay Wilder's claim that his extravagant ring-walk costume was in part to blame for his defeat to Tyson Fury has been labelled a "poor excuse" by the Briton's promoter Frank Warren.

The previously unbeaten Wilder donned an outfit weighing over 40lbs in tribute to Black History Month prior to his Las Vegas rematch with Fury.


Wilder relinquished his WBC heavyweight title to Fury, who produced a masterclass en route to a sensational seventh-round TKO when his opponent's corner threw in the towel.

After the fight, Wilder did not partake in the post-match news conference as he was taken to hospital but the 34-year-old apportioned his off-key performance to the heavy attire.

"A lot of people saw I wasn't the same Deontay Wilder in there and they're correct," Wilder told The Athletic

"It's my own fault. My uniform I wore was very heavy for me. I had no legs from the first round on.

"My main focus was to survive with my legs, and not on the principles I know and normally think of. I couldn't follow up with the game plan because of my legs. I couldn't do anything.

"I didn't expect it to be that heavy and have that effect on me. That's the thing we didn't test out: walking to the ring. We didn't time it right. It's all my fault. It's a learning process. 

"I really admire Black History Month, and I wanted to pay tribute to all the men and women who came before me, and I risked that over my title. They died for me, they paved the way for me."

Warren questioned the validity of Wilder's claim, though, and said Fury was simply the better man on the night.

"It's a new one on me but all that gear he had on did make me scratch my head," Warren told talkSPORT.

"But that was his choice and I'm sure when he tried it on they didn't just give it to him on the night, he must have worn it and tried it on, it was made by somebody, so he knew what the weight was. 

"He got beaten by the better man on the night. It's a poor excuse, the best man won on the night, Tyson was the best man.

"And Tyson was in his country! It wasn't like it was over here. Tyson didn't complain about the referee, I thought the referee helped him [Wilder] at times. 

"He had everything going for him Deontay Wilder and got beat by a superb Tyson Fury on the night and that's the end of it."

The decision to throw in the towel was not taken by Wilder's head trainer Jay Deas, but rather assistant Mark Breland.

While Breland's actions have largely earned praise considering Wilder, who was already bleeding form the eardrum, was being pummelled on the ropes, it was a call questioned by the fighter and his team.

Wilder, while saying he understands why the towel was thrown in, will now consider whether Breland remains part of his corner.

"I understand – it's an emotional decision – but that's not his position," Wilder added. "I'm not being emotional now. For many, many years, I have talked about this to my team.

"They know my demeanour, my warrior mindset and if I say I'm going in there to try to kill a man like I have, I accept that in return he will have to kill me as well. I've told them many times that if anyone throws the towel in on me, there will be consequences.

"We love Mark to death and he'll always be part of the team. I understand they don't want me to get hurt, but I was in more danger when I got buzzed against [Luis] Ortiz [in my first fight] than I was in this one.

"Jay told him not to. Jay is the first. Mark did it anyway."

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