“I want to bring excitement back to the heavyweight division,” the Bronze Bomber said, after becoming the first U.S.-born fighter to win a world heavyweight title since Shannon Briggs held the World Boxing Organization belt in 2006.
Judges scored the fight 118-109, 119-108 and 120-107.
“I answered a lot of questions tonight,” said Wilder, who won an Olympic bronze at the Beijing Olympics. “I already knew I could go 12 hard rounds and take a punch. I am just excited.”
Stiverne, the 36-year-old now former champion who said he had an off night, is 24-1-1 with 21 KOs.
“It just feels like I was flat in the ring,” Stiverne said. “I didn’t do what I know I can do. I need to go back and work on the mistakes. I couldn’t cut the ring. I couldn’t move my head like normal.”
As many have pointed out, he’s now the best heavyweight champ not named Klitschko. Could he beat Wladimir?
“There are other dangerous fighters, who I value more than Wilder,” James Ali Bashir, Klitschko’s assistant trainer, said last month. “For example, Mariusz Wach [who went the distance with Wladimir in 2012]. I think that Wladimir would stop Deontay by the sixth round.”