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Deontay Wilder’s Why He Picked Joseph Parker Over ‘Most Avoided Opponent"

Deontay Wilder, gearing up for his comeback fight this month after a year-long hiatus, had a choice in opponents for his return to the ring. Despite a dominant victory against Robert Helenius in 2022, many believed that a single fight in over a year wasn’t ideal for the heavyweight’s activity. Now, Wilder is set to face former world champion Joseph Parker on December 23, a choice that has sparked conversations in the boxing world.

In an interview with Boxing Social, Billy Nelson, trainer of Martin Bakole, revealed that their camp was initially offered the fight against Wilder but the American opted for Parker instead. Nelson acknowledged the tough challenge Parker faces against Wilder, emphasizing the latter’s exceptional power in the heavyweight division.

Bakole, often considered one of the most avoided heavyweights, attributes the avoidance to his success in sparring sessions against top contenders in the division. His recent display in Riyadh, where he convincingly defeated Carlos Takam, caught the attention of boxing figures in Saudi Arabia, positioning him as a potential feature in upcoming events.

While Bakole won’t feature in the December 23 event headlined by Wilder and Parker, speculation surrounds his involvement in the February 17 card, featuring Tyson Fury versus Oleksandr Usyk. However, it’s unlikely that Wilder will be his opponent, as a win against Parker is anticipated to set up a highly anticipated clash with Anthony Joshua.

The decision by Wilder to choose Parker over other contenders, including Bakole, hints at the strategic path the American heavyweight is carving for himself in the division. As anticipation builds for Wilder’s return, the choice of opponent adds intrigue to his journey back into the ring after a prolonged absence.

The upcoming bout between Wilder and Parker promises to be a compelling showdown, generating significant interest within the boxing community. While Bakole may not feature in this particular event, his rising profile and potential future matchups continue to captivate fans and industry insiders alike.

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