By Jake Donovan
As the 2012 U.S. Olympic boxing squad makes its final preparations before heading to London for the Summer Games, the lone medalist from the 2008 squad gears up for his stiffest challenge to date.
Heavyweight prospect Wilder has agreed to terms for a showdown with Kelvin Price. The bout will take place on August 4 at the Mobile Civic Center's Expo Hall in Mobile, AL. Fox Sports will televise the battle of hulking unbeaten boxers.
“Deontay has agreed to the rounds, the location and the purse,” confirmed Jay Deas, Wilder’s manager. “He’s on board with the fight.”
Wilder (23-0, 23KO) was the lone member of the 2008 U.S. Olympic boxing squad to earn a medal, capturing Olympic bronze in the heavyweight division during the Summer Games in Beijing. He turned pro later that year in Nashville and has literally been a knockout every time out.
What has been missing to date are wins against viable opposition. Wilder, who took up boxing just seven years ago at age 20, has taken the slow road to stardom in the pro ranks. Most of his wins coming on the off-camera portion of televised cards or locally in his hometown of Tuscaloosa, AL.
A showdown with Price (13-0, 6KO) can help change that perception, although that is not Wilder’s goal. What the fight represents for the 6’7” heavyweight is the next step in the continued development of his career - and perhaps bragging rights in the South.
"I want to be the heavyweight champion of the world,” insists Wilder. “Being the main event on FoxSports Net against a talented fighter like Kelvin Price is a step toward realizing my dream.”
There are many similarities between Wilder and Price in terms of their background and physical stature. Price is based out of Pensacola, an hour or so from Mobile where their fight takes place. Both fighters stand at 6’7” and served as standout athletes in high school before later turning to boxing.
Price has flown under the radar in five years as a pro, though his best win recently received an upgrade. A May ’10 points win over then-unbeaten Tor Hamer looks even better after the New Yorker’s recent success in last month’s Prizefighter heavyweight tournament in the UK.
“Kelvin’s resume went up considerably,” Deas notes of the unbeaten 37-year old. “He’s a good fighter. It’s two undefeated tall fighters going in there. We’re certainly expecting to do our thing.”
Wilder is coming off of a 3rd round knockout of Owen Beck last month in Tuscaloosa. The August showdown with Price will mark his fourth fight of 2012, keeping in line with an active campaign that has featured 6-7 fights per year in each of his first three full years as a pro.
“I can't wait for August 4th and hope all boxing fans will come to beautiful Mobile, Alabama for the event. You won't be disappointed," Wilder promises.
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com. Follow Jake on Twitter: @JakeNDaBox