Deontay Wilder will make his return to the ring on Saturday, Oct. 15 against Robert Helenius.
The bout, scheduled for the Barclay's Center in New York, was announced on Wednesday as a 12-round WBC heavyweight title eliminator. Known as "The Bronze Bomber," 36-year-old Wilder (42-2-1, 41 KOs) is a former WBC heavyweight champion whose two previous fights were back-to-back losses to Tyson Fury — the most recent of which came by way of knockout on Oct. 9, 2021.
“It’s been a long journey for me and as of today it continues. I thought so many times about whether I should stay out of the business or come back,’’ Wilder said in a press release. “Once I got my statue in my hometown [of Tuscaloosa, Ala.] and saw so many people arrive and celebrate with me and my family, to see all the emotions, grown men crying in front of their children and saying he is a real true king, made me feel like my job is not done.
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"So, here I am once again, looking forward to returning to the ring. I am looking forward to coming to Barclays Center, a place where I have had my most devastating knockouts and a place I consider my second home. So where all my Bombzquad people at? It’s time to put on your war gear. And let’s go to work, baby. Bombzquad is back!”
Wilder's opponent, 38-year-old Helenius (30-3, 19 KOs), has won his last three fights. “The Nordic Nightmare” is coming off consecutive stoppage wins over Adam Kownacki, the most recent of which was a sixth-round TKO on the undercard of Wilder-Fury III in 2021.
Now, Helenius steps up to the main event to face Wilder having won six of his last seven bouts.
“It’s great to be back at Barclays Center in an even bigger fight than my last one. I’ve been waiting for this opportunity for a long time and I’m going to be ready,’’ Helenius said. “I’m going to produce an even bigger upset than I did with Kownacki. I’m going for the belt, so this is a fight to prepare me to achieve that goal. I can only become the best heavyweight in the world by beating the best and that’s what I intend to do on October 15.’’