Middleweight beltholder Peter Quillin could soon defend his WBO title against promotional stablemate Danny Jacobs.
Wilder laughs off 'bogus' protest by Liakhovich
Deontay Wilder on Sergei Liakhovich's protest of his first-round knockout loss: "I must have hit him harder than I thought, because he must still have a concussion."
Sergei Liakhovich has directed his advisor to file a formal protest with the California State Athletic Commission, claiming that Deontay Wilder's first-round knockout punch landed behind his head during last Friday's heavyweight bout at the Fantasy Springs Casino in Indio, Calif.
According to a statement, Liakhovich's advisor, attorney Anthony Cardinale, is preparing the protest seeking a "no contest" due to "illegal punches" that led to his knockout at the 1:43 mark.
"My goal for going public is to expose Wilder and show people what really happened, because it was difficult to clearly see his illegal punches on television due to the camera placement and how quickly it happened," said Liakhovich, whose statement claims that he was warned by Wilder's sparring partners about illegal blows.
Wilder (29-0, 29 knockouts) greeted the news with humor.
"I must have hit him harder than I thought, because he must still have a concussion," said Wilder, a 6-foot-7 2008 Olympic bronze medalist.
"But I have an idea for him if he feels like the only way that I won is because I illegally hit him. We can spar so I can prove to him that I can knock him out again. But it can be a charity sparring, and I'll wear four-pound gloves, and we can donate the money to his favorite charity."
The first of two vicious right-hand shots from Wilder that ended the fight appeared to land sharply on the left temple of Liakhovich, landing him flat on his back where he remained, legs and arms twitching.
"If he had hit me in the face, fair and square, I would have kept my mouth shut and said he was the better man. Everybody's going around saying nobody can stand up to his power -- 29 knockouts in 29 fights," said Liakhovich, whose statement is accompanied by a photo meant to illustrate his version of what happened.
Wilder's manager and trainer, Jay Deas, called the move, "baffling."
"It was a fantastic, explosive performance by Deontay, and I felt like it was one of his best performances, and for Liakhovich to file some sort of bogus protest really hurts his own legacy as a former world champion," said Deas.
Meanwhile, Deas is ready to move on to another opponent.
"There are several opponents that I would like to see Deontay fight. I would like Tony Thompson, Manuel Charr, the winner of Seth Mitchell and Chris Arreola is very interesting. Tomasz Adamek is interesting," said Deas.
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com