He will enter the ring in Alabama as a hefty underdog and he has been given less than a month’s notice for the fight, by far and away the biggest of his four-and-a-half year pro career – but unbeaten heavyweight Gerald Washington is convinced he will “shock the world” in beating WBC king Deontay Wilder on February 25.
Thanks to original Wilder return foe Andrej Wawrzyk failing a pre-fight drugs test, Washington, 18-0-1(12) got the late replacement call, and the big, 6’6” former football player is saying all the right things going into the fight. Washington, who holds some decent wins – over the likes of Eddie Chambers and Ray Austin (both faded it must be said) – tells Sky Sports he will “hurt” Wilder and knock him out.
“I’ve been working these last four-and-a-half years for this moment right here,” the 34-year-old said. “This is just the beginning. We’re really excited and we’re ready to rock. I know I’m fighting in his home state. They love him out there, that’s their hometown boy, and I’m going to go in and take care of business. I just want to step to him, hurt him, and eventually wear him down and take him out. I’m going to shock the world. Everyone is sleeping on me and I like it like that.”
Washington said he is not thinking about Wilder’s arm – the champ of course having had hand and biceps surgery after his win over Chris Arreola last July – insisting he is not looking at this as a possible advantage. Washington said he is ready for the best Deontay Wilder, and he sounds extremely motivated. With a nothing to lose shot, Washington could be very dangerous in next month’s fight.
It’s a big step up for him of course, but Washington, with his height, reach and physical strength, just might give Wilder some problems. In all likelihood, Washington will push Wilder, 37-0(36) far harder than original challenger Wawrzyk would have. It will be a shocking result if Washington makes good with his KO prediction, but with the big, big heavyweights, anything can happen.