Deontay Wilder has now confirmed that he does intend to return to boxing and fight again.
The former WBC heavyweight champion of the world revealed that he was contemplating retirement after his trilogy defeat to Tyson Fury back in October, but will resume his career in the near future.
Wilder has been taking some time away from the spotlight in recent months, as he often does between fights.
On Wednesday though, he was honoured by a statue in his hometown Tuscaloosa, Alabama
Wilder attended the unveiling of the statue and gave a speech in which he concluded by confirming his plans to fight again.
“I can’t stop right here,” he said at the end of his address, “I must continue my journey. I have to, I have to.”
He later added to Blue Blood Sports TV: “The one thing about boxing – and I’ve proved that – that boxing thrives off of excitement, but the excitement of the American champion.
“Once that dies, so does boxing…
“I should come back on popular demand, because that’s all I’ve been hearing from high and low.
“From homeless people all the way up to billionaires.
“It’s just been an amazing feeling, so many people reaching out and telling me I’m important because without an American heavyweight boxing really isn’t exciting.
“An American heavyweight brings that excitement to the division, and then all the money flows. I’ve had multiple people ask me to come back.”
Wilder is now 36 years old, but remains one of the top ranked heavyweights in the world having only lost to the man widely considered to be the best in the division today.
Fans are already eagerly anticipating his return and speculating about potential fights with the likes of Anthony Joshua, Oleksandr Usyk, Dillian Whyte and Andy Ruiz Jr.
At present, Fury still holds the WBC title that he won from Wilder, despite claiming to be retired from the sport.
Meanwhile, Usyk owns the other three belts, having dethroned AJ to take them back in September.
The pair are headed for a rematch next, which is being targeted for July 23.
Whyte remains a viable opponent option for Wilder due to their bitter past rivalry.
However, it is currently unclear what his plans are following his own knockout defeat to Fury.
The most viable option of the four may well be Ruiz Jr who, like Wilder, is signed with Al Haymon’s PBC.
Ruiz Jr is heading for a clash with Wilder’s old foe Luis Ortiz in August.
If he emerges victorious, a bout…
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