Wilder destroys Molina
By Jim Dower: In a very poor performance, WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder (34-0, 33 KOs) looked really sloppy, uncoordinated and unskilled in stopping #9 WBC Eric Molina (23-3, 17 KOs) in the 9th round on Saturday night to retain his WBC title at the Bartow Arena in Birmingham, Alabama. Wilder, 29, knocked Molina down four times in the fight.
Wilder put Molina down once in the 4th, twice in the 5th, and once in the 9th. The fight was halted in the 9th after Molina turned his back on Wilder after getting hit hard by a right hand. Wilder then dropped Molina with a chopping right to the head. Molina also turned his back to Wilder in the 5th for one of the knockdowns.
Molina staggered Wilder in the 3rd with a left hook to the head. Wilder was able to stay on his feet, but he looked shaky for a brief moment. If Molina had pressured Wilder, he might have been able to get him out of there.
Overall, it was just bad performance by the 6’7″ Wilder. he fought like he was afraid to throw his right hand. It’s unknown if he re-injured it during the training camp for the fight or what. In Wilder’s last fight against Bermane Stiverne, Wilder suffered a broken right hand. Supposedly, the hand had been healed and he was 100 percent. But with the way that Wilder fought tonight in only rarely using his right hand, it makes you wonder whether he came into the fight with an injury to his right. Most of the punches that Wilder threw were jabs and left hooks. The only times that Wilder would throw a right hand was when he was in close. Wilder rarely threw any long rights or looping rights in the fight. Those are Wilder’s trademark punches and he always threw a great deal of those punches in his previous fights, but not tonight. Wilder fought like someone with an injured hand.
Based off this performance by Wilder, the other heavyweights in the division are licking their chops wanting to get a shot at him. Wilder will likely be defending his WBC title next against former WBA heavyweight champion Alexander Povetkin. Unless Wilder’s adviser Al Haymon can get him another optional title defense, it might be Wilder’s final fight as the WBC heavyweight champion because a fighter like Povetkin would have destroyed Wilder tonight if he’d been in the ring with him.
Other boxing results on the card:
Dejan Zlaticanin TKO 4 Ivan Redkach
Julian Williams TKO 6 Arman Ovsepyan
Ahmed Elbiali TKO 1 Donta Woods
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