Funeral attire and dark glasses may be in order.
A little over a month ago at the Dream Hotel in Manhattan, an unsuspecting cadre of media and fight officials were unaware of a nightmare about to unfold. While WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder was describing a plan to recreate the scene of King Kong tumbling down the Empire State Building, courtesy of his “Bomb Squad”, Luis Ortiz (who we presume was Kong for Halloween), apparently, developed a racing heart – for which he needed drugs, which were deemed too scary and paved the way for Bermane Stiverne II.
Not because there’s a clone of Stiverne, but because these two will engage in a 13th round and beyond. Even though this is a fight you didn’t demand — and Wilder clearly bested Stiverne via UD in his most complete performance to date — it’s worth seeing what Stiverne will do in the cabin after being taken off stand-by to face a man he despises. Both of them have threatened to kill each other on Saturday night at Barclays Center, with Wilder delving into the realm of hatred.
These two weren’t exactly exchanging Christmas gifts in the weeks leading up to their January 2015 encounter, that was also nasty. This time, it’s POTUS vs the media nasty.
“This is the funeral right here- it’s just no casket yet,” said a premeditating Wilder, during Thursday’s final presser.
“This fight right here… I will get a body on my record. I’ve been wanting one for a long time anyway, and what better opponent to do it with? I want [a body] and he’s gonna be the body. He said he’s gonna kill me and I say I’m gonna kill him, so may the best man win in the killing. Not only will there be a knockout this time, but I’m taking him. I’m the reaper.”
Nothing changed on Friday, during a weigh-in with beef that was government cheese thick. Deadly insults from both and intense separation later, Wilder was still making his case for homicide. And since Vince McMahon was nowhere to be found and he looks nothing like Hulk Hogan, Saturday night’s encounter probably won’t look like a staged WWE affair.
“Most definitely he’s scared,” barked Wilder to SHOWTIME veteran analyst Steve Farhood, as Stiverne howled in the background. “I put a lot of lumps on his head the last time, put him in the hospital for several days. But this time… He gone stay there.”
I’m going boxing’s version of trick or treating as Will Smith from “MIB: II”.