Heavyweight Harold Sconiers is credited as being the first man to knock Deontay Wilder down. However, some in the arena say he knocked Wilder out.
A dispute over a ‘long count’ and Wilder being ‘saved by the bell’ has raged for some time due to eye-witness accounts from ringside.
Down twice early, Sconiers summoned all his strength following guidance from his trainer to lay Wilder out on the canvas in round two.
Despite reports, he did enough to stop Wilder there, and then, Sconiers gave his account to SportBible on what went down.
Deontay Wilder dropped badly
“Yeah, he was down, and he was down kind of with his head down, just sitting there like for three or four seconds,” said Sconiers.
“The ref is counting, I’m like, ‘Come on, come on.’ And he [Deontay Wilder] starts to move, and he starts to get up. He turns around, he’s pulling on the ropes, and he’s struggling, and he’s getting up slowly.
“I swear, I think it was at like number nine where he got up — it was eight or nine — [but] it was late in the count. I believe it was nine. But it was just on the edge [of ten].
“I was just super excited and looking for that count to go past the ten mark.”
But to Sconiers demise, Wilder got up just in time. The journeyman outlined that his “heart sank” as Wilder got a minute to recover before the third round.
Sconiers picks up what happened next.
“He got up, and the ref said, ‘Are you okay?’ And he’s like, ‘Yeah, yeah,’ he kind of nods. It’s the end of the round, so his corner runs in, and they grab him and start pulling him back. ‘Yeah, he’s good, he’s good, he’s good.’
“They grabbed him back for the rest period, and my heart sank. That was it.”
What might have been
Concluding on what would have been the most famous win of his career against a Pound for Pound future Hall of Famer, Sconiers stated: “That was the shot I had.
“I could get another one [for the rest of my career], but, you know, I missed that opportunity.”
Seven bouts later, Sconiers stepped away from the sport. He only won one other contest after Wilder. Ironically, it came against a former multi-time title challenger in Jameel McCline.
It will forever be the Wilder fight that people remember about Harold Sconiers. The time he almost stopped a legend before his legacy began.