Wrecking ball who KO’d Deontay Wilder now tearing through top division

Evgeny Romanov Deontay Wilder


Heavyweight champ Deontay Wilder has lost three fights in the last twelve years, none since entering the paid ranks on the back of an Olympic bronze medal.

At 42-0-1, Deontay Wilder holds the most impressive record in all of boxing since the retirement of Floyd Mayweather on a magic 50 – not out mark.

Wilder lost five amateur bouts in total – if you go by the statistics from a popular boxing record site, one of which was a stoppage.

The reverse is the solitary time Wilder has not heard the final bell himself. It came against Evgeny Romanov during the run-up to the 2008 Olympics.

Caught by an overhand right, followed by two more for good measure, Wilder was downed and subsequently pulled out by the referee.

Romanov would eventually fail to qualify for Beijing. He then remained in the amateur ranks until 2010.

Amazingly, the Russian then took a six-year hiatus from the sport.


Enticed out of retirement to turn pro in 2016, Romanov hasn’t looked back.

He was taken the distance three times in his first seven bouts. But Romanov has since become something of a wrecking ball. Six of his last seven opponents have fallen.

Boasting a C.V of 14-0 with 10 KO’s, Romanov is rated number eight with the WBO after picking up the lowly-regarding ‘Global’ title (whatever that is).

Ranked higher than the likes of Joe Joyce, Filip Hrgovic and Derek Chisora, Romanov is a shoo-in to gain a title shot soon. But at 34, time is fast running out.

It makes you wonder why he waited so long to eventually enter the top division race.

A collision course with Anthony Joshua would have been on the agenda had the Briton not announced his intention to vacate the WBO strap. AJ is set to pass it on to the number one contender Oleksandr Usyk.


It means Romanov could target Usyk, or potentially take a different route. Carving a path towards a lucrative rematch with Wilder.

The backstory is ready-made. But with a WBC ranking of 21, Romanov still has work to do.

With a long history of wanting to avenge even close fights, Wilder may be willing to give Romanov his shot if he can position himself in the top fifteen.

First of all, Wilder must take care of Tyson Fury on February 22. Then, see out the saga if there is to be the third encounter.

This gives Romanov ample time to rise up the WBC ladder. The puncher could be in a position to challenge Deontay Wilder by 2021.

It would be some rematch. If it happens.

Phil Jay is Editor of WBN. Auxiliary member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay