Don’t sleep on Deontay: Ron Katz on the heavyweights

Deontay Wilder has been roundly written off by many boxing experts following his first professional defeat at the hands of Tyson Fury back in February, but Ron Katz is not one of them.

Anybody about to call time on the elite career of ‘The Bronze Bomber’ ahead of his trilogy fight with ‘The Gypsy King’ on December 19 would be wise to listen to the words of matchmaking great Katz.

Ron, now with Joe DeGuardia’s Star Boxing and previously a mainstay of Bob Arum’s Top Rank, has worked with just about every great fighter during a 40-year career, and had a major hand in the early days of a certain Mike Tyson.

And he is not ready to give up on the chances of Wilder (42-1-1) ascending to the summit of boxing’s marquee division once again.

Katz told “I still think Deontay Wilder will have a huge say in this division, it’s a very deep division with some good looking youngsters like Daniel Dubois in it.”

Of course if Fury does get past Wilder, we are likely to get what would be the biggest fight in British boxing history – a unification match against Anthony Joshua. Katz for one believes it would live up to the hype.

He said: “It’s a very good matchup style wise and I think if the match happens sooner than later it will certainly live up to the hype.  It will certainly rival Benn-Eubank and Lewis-Bruno.”

As boxing begins to tiptoe out of the COVID-19 pandemic, so far behind closed doors, many are predicting a financial reset after the bullish spending of recent years by the likes of DAZN, particularly in the US market.

Katz weighed up the commercial future of the sport, saying: “This all depends when we come out of the pandemic, which God willing will be sooner than later. Once we do, I think the sport will thrive mightily.”

There are few better people than Katz to ask about what changes would really improve the sport professionally, so we gave him a lamp, asked him to rub it and come back to us with three wishes.

He responded: “Wow, that’s one I’d have to give some serious thought to. I would love to see one champion per division, I would love to see the best fight the best regardless of affiliation, and I would love to see all the major networks carry the sport once again.”