By Rob Smith: Unbeaten heavyweight Deontay Wilder (23-0, 23 KO’s) will be looking to impress and win over new boxing fans tonight in his 10 round bout against Kertson Manswell (22-5, 17 KO’s) at the Exposition Hall, in Mobile, Alabama. First and foremost the 6’7″ Wilder will be looking to KO the 35-year-old Manwell in their Fox Sports televised fight. However, Wilder would like to get some rounds in so that he showcase his skills and show off his new jab to boxing fans.
The 26-year-old Wilder told RingTV “What I really want to display the most is my jab. I want to show the world that jab as well as the speed of my punches. I’ve got the best footwork in the business.”
Wilder takes a lot of heat from fans for having slender legs and a huge upper body, but his legs are no thinner than IBF/WBA/WBO Wladimir Klitschko’s legs, and like him, Wilder is quick on his feet in moving around the ring. But what makes Wilder so good is his huge right hand that he has in his arsenal. He’s one of the few heavyweights in the division right now that has true one-punch power. Wilder and perhaps Bermane Stiverne are the biggest punchers in the game right now. Stiverne, however, doesn’t have the height, reach or the speed that Wilder has going for him. The size aspect makes Wilder a much bigger threat to anyone he faces.
Manswell isn’t really much of a test for Wilder, and that’s something that was pointed out by Emanuel Steward, a big fan of Wilder. Steward said to RingTV “He’s got to get away from fights like that.” Steward wants to see Wilder step it up against some good fighters from the 1st tier that can help Wilder improve. Wilder’s management has been taking it slow with him because he turned pro in 2008 with very little amateur experience under his belt aside from the 2008 Olympics. Wilder didn’t use his left hand for much when he turned pro, but he’s getting better and now has a decent jab. Wilder doesn’t throw it with the same speed and power that Wladimir does, but the jab seems to be nearly as good as Lennox Lewis’ jab.
Wilder is looking to fight for a world title next year sometime. However, if that’s to happen Wilder is going to need to start stepping it up against better opposition than guys like Manswell and Owen Beck. Wilder’s management needs to put in a concerted effort to find the best possible opponents because if he doesn’t start facing better opposition it’s going to stall his career and ultimately keep him from getting a title shot. Wilder would be ranked high right now if he had been facing better opposition the last year or so.