Deontay Wilder is an American professional boxer, secured the WBC heavyweight title from 2015 to 2020. His victory marked him as the first American world heavyweight champion since 2007, ending the longest period in boxing history without an American holding the heavyweight title.
Age: 38 years
Height: 2.01 m
Weight: 97 kg
Full name: Deontay Leshun Wilder
Born: 22 October 1985
Birthplace: Tuscaloosa, Alabama, United StatesSpouse:
Profession: American professional boxer
Deontay Wilder’s parents are Gary Wilder and Deborah Wilder. When Deontay Wilder was nine years old, his mother, Deborah Wilder, departed, leaving his father, Gary Wilder, an associate professor of anthropology at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York, to manage the household.
Deontay Wilder was the second eldest among his siblings. He has three other brothers named Marselllos Wilder, Tommy Fury, and his only sister, Telli Swift.
Deontay Wilder was previously in a relationship with his ex-girlfriend Helen Duncan. Afterward, he married Jessica Scales-Wilder in 2009, but the couple later divorced. Currently, Wilder is engaged to Telli Swift. Furthermore, Wilder has been featured on the reality television show, WAGS Atlanta.
Wilder is a father of eight children. His first child, a daughter born in 2005 with ex-girlfriend Helen Duncan, has spina bifida. Additionally, Wilder has two daughters and one son with Jessica Scales-Wilder. Currently engaged to Telli Swift, Wilder also has a child with her.
Wilder embarked on his boxing journey in October 2005 at Skyy Boxing Gym in Northport, Alabama, under the guidance of Jay Deas when he was 20 years old. By 2007, he achieved significant upsets, winning both the National Golden Gloves and the US championships at 201 lb (91 kg).
His victories included defeating Isiah Thomas and David Thompson in the Golden Gloves finals, and overcoming Quantis Graves and James Zimmerman in the US championship final. Wilder secured his spot in the Olympics by triumphing in the trials after 21 bouts. In 2008, he earned a notable victory against Rakhim Chakhiyev in Russia.
Although he suffered a knockout in a Russia-USA dual match, Wilder proceeded to compete as a heavyweight in the 2008 Olympics, earning a bronze medal by defeating Abdelaziz Touilbini and Mohamed Arjaoui but losing to Clemente Russo in the semi-final. Wilder concluded his amateur career with an approximate record of 30–5. Wilder initiated his professional career at 23 on November 15, 2008, at Vanderbilt University Memorial Gymnasium in Nashville, Tennessee. In his debut, he faced Ethan Cox (2–2–1) and secured a second-round technical knockout (TKO) after three knockdowns of Cox. Throughout 2009, Wilder fought seven times, winning each bout in the first round.
By October 2012, Wilder boasted a 25-fight win streak, all victories achieved by knockout and within four rounds. Notable opponents during this period included Owen Beck, DeAndrey Abron, and Damon Reed.
Wilder earned his first professional title by knocking out Kelvin Price (13–0, 6 KOs) on December 15, 2012, at the Memorial Sports Arena in Los Angeles. In his UK debut on April 27, 2013, he faced former European heavyweight champion Audley Harrison. Subsequently, Wilder was slated to be the main event in a card with British boxer Derek Chisora at Wembley Arena in London on June 15, 2013. Prior to this, there were conflicting statements about a deal between Golden Boy and Wilder’s camp.
Deontay Wilder’s Fights
WBC heavyweight champion
Wilder vs. Stiverne
On January 17, 2015, in an event titled “Return to Glory,” Wilder contested Stiverne at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, for the WBC heavyweight title. Wilder achieved a unanimous decision victory after twelve rounds, becoming the first American heavyweight world champion since Shannon Briggs.
Wilder vs. Molina
On May 8, 2015, Wilder revealed his intention to defend his title in his home state of Alabama, marking the first heavyweight title fight ever held in the state. Having last fought in Alabama in 2012, the bout was confirmed by Showtime to be broadcast live on June 13 at Bartow Arena in Birmingham, Alabama.
Wilder vs. Duhaupas
In August 2015, it was announced that Wilder would defend his title for the second time against WBC #12 Johann Duhaupas (32–2, 20 KOs) on September 26 at the Legacy Arena in Alabama. In front of a hometown crowd of 8,471, Wilder secured victory over Duhaupas with a TKO in the eleventh round. Despite Duhaupas claiming he had more fight left, referee Jack Reiss stopped the match as Duhaupas was battered and bloodied. This marked the first time Duhaupas had been stopped within the distance in his career.
Wilder vs. Szpilka
In December 2015, Showtime confirmed that Wilder had agreed to defend his WBC title against Polish boxer Artur Szpilka (20–1, 15 KOs) on January 16, 2016, at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. The bout would determine the next challenger for WBC mandatory contender Alexander Povetkin.
Wilder vs. Arreola
After Wilder’s return to the US, on May 26, former two-time world title challenger Chris Arreola (36–4–1–2, 31 KOs) emerged as the leading candidate to face Wilder. At that time, Arreola was not ranked by the WBC due to testing positive for marijuana after his bout against Travis Kauffman. However, his 90-day suspension concluded in March 2016, making him eligible to re-enter the WBC rankings.
Wilder vs. Washington
In November, Wilder announced his full recovery from surgery and his return to training, with a comeback fight scheduled for early 2017. Discussions were underway in December for a potential world title bout between Wilder and Hughie Fury in the first quarter of 2017. Additionally, there were advanced talks for a fight on February 25, 2017, at the Legacy Arena in Alabama against Andrzej Wawrzyk.
Wilder vs. Stiverne II
On February 27, 2017, the WBC mandated Wilder to face mandatory challenger Bermane Stiverne, prompting immediate negotiations. Later, on July 18, 2017, reports surfaced that discussions were underway for Wilder’s sixth defense of his WBC title against heavyweight contender Luis Ortiz (27–0, 23 KOs, 2 NC).
Wilder vs. Ortiz
Following his return to the ring with a knockout victory over Daniel Martz on December 8, Luis Ortiz, who had previously faced a failed drug test, called out Deontay Wilder. Wilder, present ringside as a commentator entered the ring and assured Ortiz, “I guarantee you, you’ll have the fight.” Subsequently, negotiations recommenced on December 19 for a potential WBC heavyweight title bout between Wilder and Ortiz, slated to take place at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn on March 3, 2018.
Wilder vs. Fury
From April to the end of June 2018, negotiations were underway between the camps of Joshua and Wilder for a heavyweight unification fight. The primary challenges centered on issues such as purse split, date, and venue. At one juncture, Wilder had expressed willingness to fight Joshua in the UK, but complications arose due to confusions in the contract exchange process.
Wilder vs. Breazeale
On the evening of May 18, 2019, Wilder successfully defended his WBC heavyweight title against mandatory challenger Dominic Breazeale, ranked #4 by the WBC. Wilder secured a knockout victory with only 43 seconds remaining in the first round. A powerful right from Wilder sent Breazeale to the canvas, rendering him unable to continue, and the referee waved off the contest after reaching the ten count.
Wilder vs. Helenius
In August 2022, it was revealed that Wilder would make his comeback to the ring a year after his loss to Fury. The announcement confirmed that Wilder would be up against Finland’s Robert Helenius, and the bout was scheduled for October 15, 2022, at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center.
On the fight night, Wilder secured a knockout victory over Helenius with a short right hand, ending the bout at 2:57 of the first round.
Deontay Wilder vs. Joseph Parker
In a disappointing turn for Deontay Wilder’s storied boxing career, the ‘Day of Reckoning’ saw him suffer a surprising defeat against Joseph Parker in Saudi Arabia. Despite being outclassed, Wilder’s ability to endure punishment impressed fans. Parker secured a decisive victory with a significant margin on the judges’ scorecards (Michael Alexander 118-111, Steve Gray 120-108, John Latham 118-110). In an unusual twist, it was Wilder who faced powerful shots from Parker, with fans praising his resilience, notably when he withstood a clean overhand right to the chin.
Deontay Wilder’s Net Worth
While Deontay Wilder’s career earnings have surpassed $100 million, his estimated net worth is reported to be $50 million.