Ex-heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder has courted controversy in the past for his views on potentially killing opponents inside the ring.
Wilder has famously stated he wants a ‘body on his record’ and said he wanted to put somebody in a ‘body bag’ too.
After going the distance with Bermane Stiverne when claiming his only world title in 2015, Wilder was allowed to face the Canadian-Haitian again.
Irked that Stiverne was the only fighter on his C.V. who made it to the final bell, the pre-fight threat was real.
“It won’t be a disappointment for me, whether I knock him out or whether I beat him to death,” Wilder told On The Ropes Radio before his rematch, which ended in a first-round demolition.
“I said I beat him to an inch of his life last time. This time it may be to the death. Whether I beat him or beat him to death, it’s all a win in my situation.
“I want to unify the division, and I want to see who is the best. I want the ones who feel that they’re the best to come and prove me wrong.”
When attempting to put together a failed undisputed unification, promoter Eddie Hearn frowned over Wilder’s comments.
“You don’t say you want to put someone in a body bag unless you’re purely desperate,” Hearn said, according to The Guardian in 2018. “He’s completely lost his head.
“He’s prepared to say or do anything to make the fight, other than actually try to make the fight.”
Explaining how his persona works, Wilder said his ‘Bronze Bomber’ alter-ego takes over when it comes to his game face at fight time.
“For me, when I turn into the Bronze Bomber, it separates me from all these other fighters,” Wilder told CBS before his first fight with Tyson Fury. “It makes me channel into another scary dimension. It’s scary!
“I have a scary feeling when I turn into that man because I feel stronger. The way my mindset is, the energy that is channeling! All of that is real.”
He added: “When the lights come on, it’s just a different person that comes out inside of me.
“I’m a playmaker. I’m a playmaker, and when it’s time for me to be able to make plays, I do it well.
“When I fought Ortiz, I told him that I had already fought you one hundred times. Nothing you will be able to do is going to get me out because I fought you one hundred times due to visualization and meditation.
“The transformation is there the night of the fight. I’m no longer Deontay Wilder no more. I’m the Bronze Bomber.”