Promoter Eddie Hearn revealed that his team captain, Deontay Wilder, was upset about his fight against Zhilei Zhang being stopped in the fifth round. He felt that it shouldn’t have been.

The referee, Kieran McCann, didn’t give Wilder (43-4-1, 42 KOs) a chance to see if he could make it out of the round after he was dropped by Zhang (27-2-1, 22 KOs) in the fifth on Saturday night at Kingdom Arena in Riyadh.

When Wilder got back up, he looked a little shaky, but not so much that he couldn’t have possibly recovered.

With Wilder’s powerful right hand, he might have been able to land a shot on Zhang to turn things around. We saw Wilder get up off the deck to hurt Tyson Fury in their trilogy match in 2021.

Hearn says Wilder, 38, is frustrated because he couldn’t perform. He wasn’t pulling the trigger with his punches, and that led to Zhang using him as target practice until stopping him in the fifth.

Hearn on Wilder’s Career

“He hasn’t been able to perform. So, I would think he’s incredibly frustrated,” said Eddie Hearn to Fight Hub TV about his Team captain, Deontay Wilder, after his underwhelming performance in his fifth-round knockout loss to Zhilei Zhang on Saturday night in the 5 vs. 5 event in Riyadh.

Wilder has been having the same problem not pulling the trigger on his punches for the last four years, so it shouldn’t have shocked Hearn that he failed to do so tonight against Zhang. He’s gunshy now and afraid to get countered. He doesn’t seem to have faith in his chin to handle the counter punches that will come when he throws his right hand.

“I think he was complaining about the stoppage. He was a world champion. He had a lot of defenses. He lit up the heavyweight division. He didn’t have many wins over elite guys, but he had some good wins,” said Hearn.

“He was exciting and had some great fights with Tyson Fury. So, he’ll be remembered. We’ll see what’s next for him. It’s over to him. Well, AJ is roaring on,” said Hearn when told that it was ‘too bad that we never got to see the AJ fight’ with Wilder. “Unfortunately, it didn’t, but that’s boxing,” said Hearn.

The way Hearn is talking, it doesn’t sound like he will make an effort to sign Wilder to his Matchroom company after this loss. That makes sense. If Wilder can’t pull the trigger, he’s useless to him or any promoter.

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