Former WBC world heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder returns this Saturday, as the ‘Bronze Bomber’ faces former European champion, Robert Helenius in Brooklyn.
Wilder has not fought since his second defeat to Tyson Fury in October 2021 but is still one of the biggest threats in the heavyweight division. Wilder carries freakish punch power, which is visible in all his fights as he knocked down every opponent he faced. Wilder won the WBC title in 2015 and made nine successful defences of his belt, whilst also surviving a draw with Tyson Fury to keep hold of his belt, before losing it to Fury in a rematch in 2020. Wilder fought Fury a third time but came up short and would be stopped in round 11, however, Wilder cannot be written off as a serious heavyweight contender.
Helenius is a very tough fight for Wilder’s return as he is a man who is more than partial to providing an upset. In 2011, Helenius pulled off a big upset when he defeated Derek Chisora by a split decision. Helenius has also been in with former WBC title challenger Dillian Whyte; his awkward style saw him complete the full 12 rounds but would come up short on that night. Helenius rejuvenated his career in March 2020 as the ‘Nordic Nightmare’ catapulted his name back into the upper echelon of the heavyweight division as he provided back-to-back upset victories over hot prospect Adam Kownacki.
Wilder will be looking to bounce back and prove that he is still a big-time player in the heavyweight division, whilst Helenius will look to continue the Indian summer of his career. The winner looks set to go on to fight former unified heavyweight champion Andy Ruiz Jr. Ruiz Jr defeated Luis Ortiz in a WBC eliminator in September, putting him in the position to fight to the victor of Wilder vs Helenius in a final eliminator for Tyson Fury’s WBC title.