Deontay Wilder fought with injured hand, eye vs. Bermane Stiverne
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Heavyweight Deontay Wilder says he fractured his right hand during “the third or fourth round” of his WBC title-winning unanimous decision over Bermane Stiverne on Saturday in Las Vegas, and also fought with an injured left eye suffered during a Friday training exercise.
Wilder spoke to RingTV.com from his native Tuscaloosa, Alabama on Sunday.
“I’m just coming from the hospital not too long ago and got my right hand X-rayed and stuff, and it’s fractured. I had fractured my right hand in the third or fourth round of the fight, so I was fighting with one hand, and, truth to be told, I was fighting with one eye, as well, because I injured my left eye the day before the fight. I had the band laced up to my foot, and it slipped from under my foot and went straight into my eye,” said Wilder of an exercise that resulted in a stretching band striking him in that eye.
“I laid on the ground for about 15 minutes and couldn’t open my eye. There was a lot of swelling and I couldn’t open my eye. When I could open my eye, all I could see was black and white dots. I had to get my doctor up there and we got some eye drops medicine that helped me out to the point where I could see just a little bit. So I really had one arm and one eye. It was still cloudy for me to see, but I had a warrior mentality and my will and my heart was going to carry me all the way through.”
The 29-year-old Wilder (33-0, 32 knockouts) pitched a near shutout victory to become the first American to be a division titleholder since Shannon Briggs in 2007, doing so against the 36-year-old Stiverne (24-2-1, 21 KOs), who was the first heavyweight beltholder of Hatian descent.
The 6-foot-7 Wilder out-landed the 6-2 Stiverne overall by more than 2-to-1 (227-to-110) in total punches, comprised of a 107-to-72 advantage in power shots and 120-to-38 in jabs.
“Due to the fact that I had fractured this hand before and the pins are still there. So it’s going to be almost as if I have already had surgery. Tomorrow, I’ll have it looked at again,” said Wilder, who returned from a three-month recovery from a broken right hand prior to his 62-second stoppage of Jerry Vaughn in his eighth fight in November 2009.
“Every time that I hit him, it would hurt, but I had to keep on using it so that he wouldn’t know. I had to figure out a comfortable way to throw it, which is why some of my punches were wide. Because every time that I came straight down, it was painful for me. But I had to bang away all the way through. But I do believe that if my hand wasn’t fractured, that I would have knocked him out. That’s for sure. That’s guaranteed.”
Video by Daniel Morales