Deontay Wilder, the WBC heavyweight champion gets emotional during his post-fight press conference, claiming Robert Helenius will never be the same after Saturday night’s knockout.
With a devastating first-round knockout of Robert Helenius at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, on Saturday, Wilder showed, he still has something left in the tank after a torturous trilogy of fights with Tyson Fury in which Wilder suffered the first two defeats of his professional career.
Wilder and Helenius were friends and had previously sparred together, but the American was overcome with emotion as he highlighted the perils of boxing after his triumph while paying tribute to former super-welterweight Prichard Colon, who suffered a career-ending brain injury.
“Look at (Prichard) Colon. Prichard Colon. This man, not gonna have no kids (starts to cry). They don’t understand, they don’t **** understand what we go through man. And I don’t even know him like that. But I’ll always be an advocate for us because I think it’s a great honour. This man will never know what it feels like to be somebody’s father. But he may never be somebody’s father man. This man will never have a natural child. Or the ability to live again because he got in the ring to support his family.”
Deontay Wilder gets emotional and cries at the post-fight presser after his KO of Robert Helenius as he discusses the dangers of boxing and Prichard Colon, who suffered a life-altering brain injury…
— Michael Benson (@MichaelBensonn) October 16, 2022
The heavyweight acknowledges that he was worried about his former training partner Helenius saying, “I always have concerns for all fighters. I’m a big advocate for fighters because, like I always say, this is not a sport. A sport is something you play. You don’t play this. We risk our lives for your guys’ entertainment and I speak that forever. But when you have a relationship with a man, when you love a man, when you build a friendship with another man although he’s a thousand miles away from where I am.”
Wilder further added, “When you see stuff like that man, you want to come to his aid. I wanted to come to his aid but they wouldn’t let me. But my heart goes out to him and I hope he’s OK and goes back to his family because this is a tough business that we’re in.”
Wilder is largely recognized as one of boxing’s greatest power punchers. His knockout of Helenius was his 42nd in 43 professional victories. While his teammates were already emotional after his comeback victory, “The Bronze Bomber” broke down when considering the probable consequences of Saturday’s result.
Meanwhile, Wilder has knocked out all five of his opponents at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center, the NBA’s Nets’ home venue.
He defeated Artur Szpilka, Bermane Stiverne, Luis Ortiz, and Dominic Breazeale at Barclays Center before Helenius. Both Stiverne and Breazeale were knocked out in the first round.
“It’s just amazing to be back in Brooklyn,” Wilder said. “It’s like a second home to me. It feels so good to be back. When I got off the plane, I felt a great energy and the love, and that’s all I needed.”