I wonder if this was his thinking process during the bout…“Hmmm, he’s looking a little light tonight at 214 pounds. I got him by about 30 pounds. Look at how he flew back when I pushed off. I’m way stronger and he knows it. He’s backing up steadily, he fears this power. Wow, he’s still throwing wild punches, missed me by a mile. I’m more elusive than he thinks. It’s my night. Gonna get in his head and goad him into throwing another wild punch. My hands are by my sides, he’s going to take the bait and give me the opportunity to attack. It’s working, he’s backing up NOW it’s time for me to…. ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ. WHAT HAPPENED?” 

Not sure if this was how he thought, but it was how it looked for Robert “The Nordic Nightmare” Helenius as he fell victim to superstar and former longtime heavyweight champion Deontay “The Bronze Bomber” Wilder; who announced his return in grand fashion Saturday night, by blasting out Helenius in the first round of their WBC Heavyweight Title Eliminator which headlined a FOX Sports PBC Pay-Per-View from Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

In his first fight since an epic trilogy with Tyson Fury, Wilder stepped into the ring for the first time in just over a year and quickly reminded the world why he’s one of the most feared punchers in boxing history.

“I set him up,” said Wilder. “I allowed him to reach and when he reached, I attacked. It was a great fight. It’s been a good camp for me. We worked to make this fun for me. We work at this so much that it can just become a job. We made it fun again. We put in over 700 rounds, and it paid off tonight big time.”

Headlining at Barclays Center for the fifth time in his career, Wilder added yet another devastating highlight to his resume at the arena in Brooklyn and credited the setting of the fight for adding inspiration leading to his triumph.

“It’s just amazing to be back in Brooklyn,” said Wilder. “It’s like a second home to me. It feels so good to be back. When I got off the plane, I felt the great energy and the love, and that’s all I needed.”

That was perhaps the most exciting fight of the weekend, but Saturday night boxing made news across the globe, literally.  First, history was made in London at The O2 Arena as Claressa Shields became a three-time undisputed champion, the first person to achieve such a feat in either men’s or women’s boxing. Shields defeated Savannah Marshall (12-1, 10 KOs) via unanimous decision to unify all the belts at middleweight in an action-packed slugfest.

Shields (13-0, 2 KOs) earned the win with scores of 96-94 and 97-93 2x, cards that demonstrated her superiority inside the ring.

“I bit down in every round,” Shields said. “In every round, it felt like she would hit me with a big shot, and I would hit her with a big shot. If she hit me to the body, I’d punch her to the body. But I know that I did the most work today and that I was winning with my inside combinations.”

Lastly, in his second trip to the land Down Under, Devin Haney (29-0, 15 KOs) maintained his position at the top of the 135-pound division with a 12-round unanimous decision victory against George Kambosos (20-2, 10 KOs) at the Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne, Australia. “The Dream” retained the undisputed lightweight championship with scores of 119-109 and 118-110 2x.

“I should definitely be on the pound-for-pound rankings. In the first fight, they said that all I had was my jab. Today, I came in and showed them my right hand. I showed how versatile I am. I came to Australia not once, but twice. I beat this man twice in his hometown. I definitely deserve to be in the pound-for-pound rankings.

“He’s a warrior. I take my hat off to George Kambosos and all the Australian fans that came out. Thank you, guys, for giving me so much hospitality here. We take on all comers. No matter who it is, we want to fight the best fighters in the world. I believe I’m the best fighter in the world. Whoever is next, bring him on.”

Looks like 2023 will be the year of the return of REAL fights. Let’s go! 

Holla next week. Til then, enjoy the nightlife.

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