Deontay Wilder faces the dangerous puncher Zhilei Zhang this Saturday night in their 12-round heavyweight fight in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. The two power-punching heavyweights meet in the 5 vs. 5 event live on DAZN PPV at the Kingdom Arena.

Most fans would agree that former WBC heavyweight champion Wilder (43-3-1, 42 KOs) will need to find his old killer instinct to have a chance of winning against the two-time Chinese Olympian Zhang (26-2-1, 21 KOs).

Deontay’s recent fights have shown a decline in his ability, and it doesn’t look like he’ll turn things around by Saturday night.

Unlike Wilder, the 40-year-old Zhang hasn’t changed how he fights since turning pro in 2014, and he won’t hesitate to go for the knockout right off the bat in round one.

A Shadow of His Former Self

Wilder’s ring record has been abysmal since 2020, with him losing three times and only winning once against his former sparring partner.

The 2008 Olympic bronze medalist Wilder still possesses the one-hitter quitter in his right hand, but he’s been fighting like he’s out of ammunition lately, unable to fire that gun.

Deontay let the slow, non-puncher Tyson Fury rough him up and maul him into submission twice. If Wilder had prevented Fury from clinching him like Oleksandr Usyk, he would have stood a good chance of beating him. He fought poorly and gave away two of his fights.

We saw the same thing from Wilder in his last contest, losing to Joseph Parker. He looked afraid to throw punches and made zero adjustments during the contest.

Wilder’s Knockout Power

The former WBC heavyweight champion Wilder (43-3-1, 42 KOs) has failed so many times in the last four years that it’s difficult to give him much of a chance against Zhang (26-2-1, 21 KOs).

Deontay still has major power in his right hand, making him a threat against the slow, easy-to-hit 270+ lb Zhang. Wilder can win if he is brave enough to throw his right hand with everything on it. Zhang was on the canvas in the 2012 Olympics after being clipped by a slim 220+ lb Anthony Joshua.

Zhang knows what to expect from Wilder because he only has a right hand in his offensive arsenal, but it doesn’t matter. If Wilder connects with his right hand clean, he can end it.

The Prediction: Zhang’s Aggression to Prevail

I think Zhang will get the ‘W’ on Saturday night. Unlike Wilder, Zhang isn’t afraid to let his punches go, and he’s got major power in both hands. They say Zhang runs out of gas and is harmless after six rounds.

I don’t buy that. Zhang is still dangerous throughout his fights, and he will be like a buried landmine, ready to go off if triggered. Zhang knows Wilder is vulnerable, timid, and has a fragile chin.

From the start of the fight, Zhang will be on the attack, swinging for the fences, looking to take Wilder out in the first round.

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