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Zhilei Zhang Knocks Out Deontay Wilder: Round-by-Round Fight Analysis

Zhilei Zhang Knocks Out Deontay Wilder: Round-by-Round Fight Analysis

If that was it for Deontay Wilder, he went out with a bang — the powerful right hand of “Big Bang” Zhilei Zhang. Zhang knocked out Wilder at 1:51 of the fifth round of their heavyweight bout in Saudi Arabia, sending the American boxer to his fourth defeat in his past five fights — possibly his last fight.

Before the bout, Wilder called the fight a make-or-break moment and entertained the possibility of retirement. He looked broken when he was hit by two Zhang rights in the fifth round that dropped him to the canvas.

The 6-foot-6 Zhang weighed in at 282 pounds, 68 pounds heavier than Wilder’s 214 pounds. The proof was in the punch. When Zhang landed the knockout blow, it was with massive force.

Wilder, standing 6-foot-7, landed a few powerful right hands earlier in the round, but Zhang absorbed them before finishing off Wilder. Wilder had grazed Zhang with a right hand and appeared to be complaining to the referee before he was hit with the knockout punch. Wilder did not participate in an in-ring interview after the fight.

Wilder, 38, now has a record of 43-4-1. Zhang, the 41-year-old southpaw from China, improved to 27-2-1.

Round-by-Round Analysis

Round 5

Wilder connects with a right. Follows with another. Here comes Wilder! Throwing thunder. Zhang fights back and they get tangled up. Wilder unleashes another, and he looks like a different fighter now. Well, DOWN he goes! Zhang floors Wilder with a HUGE right. Wilder does not make the count.

Round 4

Wilder scurries away from Zhang, almost falls to the canvas. These two might set a Compubox record for fewest punches per round. To do it, you won’t need all of your fingers and toes. Wilder throws a hard right, Zhang counters with a left. Zhang 40, Wilder 36.

Round 3

Zhang moves forward like a battle carrier. Lands a left and Wilder already looks to be in trouble, looking for a safe place. Wonder what happened to Wilder’s electric right hand? Did they lose it at baggage claim? Once again, Wilder in the corner. Zhang lands a couple of lefts. Zhang 30, Wilder 27.

Round 2

Wilder lands a right, but looks scared. Zhang now unloading as he corners Wilder. Wilder trying to punch his way out. Zhang lets him free, but he’s backing him into the corner again. Wilder not looking confident at all. Wilder lands a right, but no follow-up as he drifts into the corner again and takes a hard right. Zhang 20, Wilder 18.

Round 1

Big Bang Zhang, wow, looking BIG all right. Especially as he backs Wilder into a corner. Wilder slides free. More than a minute in, waiting on the first real punch. Wilder throws a right, but nothing memorable. Boxers pawing at each other. With that 68-pound weight advantage, Zhang looks like the natural aggressor. Zhang 10, Wilder 9.

Credit: USA Today

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