As Deontay Wilder readies himself for his mandatory title defense against Dominic Breazeale on May 18, the WBC champion talks about taking the mantle from past American heavyweight champions and why he plans on keeping the world title Stateside for a long time to come...
“There has been a long line of great American heavyweight champions who represented our country with pride, strength and honor in the ring,” said Wilder. “I take the responsibility very seriously to pick up where they left off and continue to show every young fighter who looks up to me, that they one day can be the heavyweight champion of the world.
”I’m a champion of the world, but I represent for the entire country and everyone in it,” said Wilder. “I’ve fought challengers from all around the world, knowing in my mind how important it was to keep this title in the U.S.
“Fighters like Jack Johnson, Joe Louis, Muhammad Ali, Mike Tyson and more have paved the way for me,” said Wilder. “Now I’m going to take what they started and make sure that the heavyweight world championship stays in America for a long time.
“Being the heavyweight champion and holding that title on the American sports landscape is a huge deal,” said Wilder. “There was a time where that person was as well-known as the president. I’m going to keep leaving a path of destruction inside the ring, so that everyone knows I am the one name and one face of the heavyweight division.”