Is Wilder the great American hope for heavyweight boxing?
Stiverne vs Wilder weigh-in: (Video) Pair both promise a painful night for their opponent.
Stiverne vs Wilder head-to-head: (Video) Tense face off between the pair.
Stiverne vs Wilder press conference: (Video) Heated exchange between fighters.
Deontay Wilder faces Bermane Stiverne at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas on Saturday night looking to become the new WBC world heavyweight champion.
Wilder (32-0, 32 KOs) has left a trail of devastation behind him through his professional career thus far which follows on from his bronze medal at the Beijing Olympics in 2008.
Admittedly, he has faced significant criticism for the level of opposition that he has faced in that time, but he can only beat what is put in front of him as he now looks ahead to the biggest fight of his career.
The 29-year-old has been billed as the big American hope for the heavyweight division as they have now gone over nine years without a champion in that weight class. With Wladimir Klitschko continuing to dominate, there is a sense that 2015 will bring him tougher challenges, and Wilder will certainly be in the mix if he can overcome Stiverne.
However, he won’t be overlooking his opponent on Saturday night as Stiverne (24-1-1) also possesses brutal power that he demonstrated with his victory over Chris Arreola last year to capture the world title.
The 36-year-old has vowed that no one will ever hear about Wilder again after Saturday night, and naturally he harbours his own ambitions of unifying the division.
The animosity between the pair has undoubtedly helped to build the bout and it is just one of numerous factors which make this one of the most highly-anticipated heavyweight fights in years.
Wilder has insisted that he is ready to become the new face of the division, and as demonstrated at the press conference on Thursday he has the charisma and personality that can make him a global superstar after promising to “put this Haitian on permanent vacation”.
However, he has to pass the biggest test of his career on Saturday and given that he has never been past four rounds to date, he may well have to dig deep and answer several questions in the fight.
Can he take a punch? Has he got the stamina to go 12 rounds? Has he got the heart and determination to stand up to the champion? These are all questions that have yet to be answered but it also adds extra intrigue to the bout.
America and in fact the entire world are ready for a new heavyweight star, and while that could come in the form of a Brit with Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua soon to be knocking on the door, it is a bit sweeter given the history of the sport that it could well be an American to light up the division.