DEONTAY WILDER'S BRILLIANT AQUISITION of the WBC World Heavyweight championship makes heavyweight boxing a whole new brawl game, both in the ring and outside the ropes.

Deontay Wilder

The lopsided victory of the charismatic clouter from Tuscaloosa, Alabama, over holder Bermane Stiverne not only brings a long-awaited American renaissance for the sport's flagship division, but cements the emergence of a new behind-the-scenes power-broker in world boxing.

One Al Haymon, a multi-millionaire mogul from the music industry, is near to becoming American boxing's Mr Big. Is he the new Don King?

On Ali's 73rd birthday, Wilder reminded us what boxing used to be like in the great man's heyday, even mimicking him at the end, declaring "I'm so pretty... I shook up the world." Well, good as it was it was hardly as as earth-shattering as Ali's win over Liston 51 years ago.

But is has opened up a new era for heavyweight boxing. The fight was televised live in America on Showtime and peaked at 1.34 million, which was the highest rated card on Showtime for more than two years.

A lot of people including myself wondered what might happen if he went beyond six rounds, but he had the stamina and heart to take all the fight out of Stiverne.

What impressed me more than anything was his jab which was reminiscent of Larry Holmes. He also took a couple of shots on the whiskers but used his brain and boxed intelligently.

The refreshing Wilder seems a worthy successor as holder of the belt worn with such distinction by Vitali Klitschko and a reunification showdown with Wladimir for the other three titles would be a record-breaking belter. But it won't happen yet and may not happen at all.

Fury was made the mandatory challenger for Klitschko's WBO World title following his win over Dereck Chisora last November and he needs to keep active while he waits for Klitschko. So he takes on a risky defence of his European and WBO International title against Romanian Christian Hammer at the O2 arena on February 28.

Tyson Fury

Klitschko confirmed this week that he will defend all of his belts against the undefeated, but unheralded American Bryant Jennings on April 25 at Madison Square Garden; before having to fulfil his WBO obligation and face the Manchester giant, or vacate the belt.

I've had conversations with Klitschko's team, headed by Bernd B??nte and the talks broke down because of the financial demands from their side of the table. The Klitschko's have a great image in the sport.

Tyson is in a strong position as he is the mandatory challenger, which is what the Chisora fight was all about; get the number one spot to Klitschko and force the fight with him instead of letting them cherry pick opponents. But the worst case scenario is if it goes to purse bids.

For Wilder, he has already spoken of Fury as a potential opponent and I believe this could be a natural fight between two undefeated giants who can both box and punch.

It's one of the most exciting fights out there. Taking my promoter's hat off and looking at it as a fan, it's certainly one that I'd love to see. Fury v Wilder would easily be the biggest heavyweight fight held in Britain in the last ten years and could pack out any football stadium in this country.

Like me, Fury wants Klitschko and is certainly up for it if he gets past the hard-hitting German-based Romanian, Hammer at the O2 on February 28. He should. But nothing is ever certain in boxing, as boxing's new Mr Big may yet discover.


BRITISH BOXING HAS SHAMEFULLY LOST one of its best - if not the best - referees of recent years, as Richie Davies has handed in his licence to the British Boxing Board of Control.

Richie Davies

Although he hasn't made it public, I understand that Davies, much-respected among those in the game, especially the fighters, feels aggrieved at apparently being frozen out of handling the really big fights that have taken place over the past couple of years.

I think I know why. The 59-year-old former London cabbie fell foul of the Board when he attended - merely as a spectator - the Haye-Chisora fight I was involved with at Upton Park in July 2012.

The BBBofC had refused to licence this show because of Chisora's suspension and it went ahead under the auspices of the Luxembourg Federation with the Board refusing to allow their own officials to participate.

Davies' presence, although only as a fan, is believed to have displeased the Board, particularly their autocratic chairman Charlie Giles who also heads the Referees Commission.

It seems an odd coincidence that Davies did not work as a referee for a while (only occasionally as a judge) and when he eventually did he was not allocated any of the marquee title fights that his rating as a star-class official merited.

There may well be other issues involved but Davies clearly feels frustrated and the result is the unfortunate loss of world class ref.


TRILOGIES IN BOXING have served up some classics over the years. In the 1940s Tony Zale v Rocky Graziano, in the 70s Muhammad Ali v Joe Frazier, in the 80s Sugar Ray Leonard v Roberto Duran, in the 90s Evander Holyfield v Riddick Bowe and in the 2000s Marco Antonio Barrera v Erik Morales, plus Arturo Gatti v Micky Ward.

Muhammad Ali v Joe Frazier

Tonight, live and exclusive on BoxNation, fans will get to see this decade's most exciting trilogy, when Brandon Rios and Mike Alvardo collide in Colorado with the vacant WBO World Welterweight title on the line.

Going into the fight they are one win apiece - Rios won the first encounter, stopping Alvarado in seven rounds in October 2012, then five months later Alvarado got revenge winning a close points decision. Both fights were fight of the year candidates - so the third chapter should be the final decider.

It's going to be a war so don't miss it! Live coverage on BoxNation starts at 2am tonight/Sunday morning.


Subscribe to BoxNation to watch Alvarado v Rios III LIVE.