Deontay Wilder has sensationally poured water over his upcoming fight with Canadian Bermane Stiverne by claiming that he doesn’t want the fight to happen but insists he ‘must complete the task’.
Previously, Matchroom promoter Eddie Hearn has claimed that Wilder turned down an extra £3m to fight Dillian Whyte after his original fight with Luis Ortiz was cancelled, however, the American favoured a rematch with Stiverne instead.
“We’ve offered Wilder 3 million dollars and US TV,” Hearn said.
Hearn also suggested that Wilder was among many boxers who were reluctant to face the British boxer.
“People don’t want to fight Dillian Whyte.
“He’s a real handful, he’s got a great chin, he don’t stop throwing punches, he’s strong, it’s frustrating.
“He just keeps coming back at you.
"They don’t seem to want the fight. It’s frustrating getting Dillian Whyte an opponent.
“Every fighter that we’re asking for money we’re giving it to them and they’re still coming back and not accepting the fight.”
Referring to the money he offered to Wilder, Hearn said: “It’s probably $4m (£3m) and he’s making one and a half (£1.1m)
Whyte has frequently accused Wilder of running from him, but the American is rarely caught speaking about the loud-mouthed Brit.
Instead he’s spent his time talking down his bout against Stiverne, who remains the only man to not be knocked out by the undefeated WBC heavyweight champion.
Wilder was trying to engineer a fight against Ortiz and even offered Stiverne a six-figure sum to step aside to make way for Ortiz, but once the Cuban tested positive for banned substances, Wilder was forced to continue with his scheduled fight against the Canadian.
Speaking ahead of the showdown on November 4, Wilder said:
“Unfortunately, he’s the body that’s in front of me. Nobody wants this fight – I don’t even want it. But the reality of it is, it must happen. He’s my mandatory, so there’s no way around it, and people have to deal with that.”
During their previous bout in 2015, Wilder won in fairly convincing style despite the fact that Stiverne was the first man to take him to 12 rounds, winning by large margins on all three scorecards.
He added: “It’s not like I was trying to avoid Stiverne, because I wasn’t.
“The second time it’s easier. When I figure you out the first time, the second time is a piece of cake. It’s a piece of cake, and the way I am now – it ain’t even near the end of camp and I’m already ready right now. That’s the dangerous part about it.”