Errol Spence Jr. is siding with fellow American fighter and PBC stablemate Deontay Wilder ahead of the former heavyweight champion’s third fight against British boxer and WBC titleholder Tyson Fury.
“I'm rolling with Deontay. How can I roll with a dude across the pond?” Spence told Barbershop Conversations. “I've been watching Deontay's [training] videos and he's been looking sharp. Now he's throwing combinations to the body. He has somebody his height [with new trainer and former heavyweight contender Malik Scott]. Hooks to the body. Hooks to the head. 1-2-3's and things like that. Uppercuts. A lot of things that he was missing. A lot of times he was just a 1-2 fighter. It'll be good to see him able to switch things up … I’m hoping Deontay Wilder gets his payback and just dues.”
Wilder and Fury will fight on July 24 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas in an ESPN and FOX Sports joint pay-per-view.
In recent weeks, Wilder has released a series of new workout videos hitting mitts and showing new wrinkles in his game that have piqued the interest of many throughout the sport.
“It looks like he's been training hard and staying focused and getting in shape,” said Spence. “I wish him the best. I hope he gets the big knockout. I heard him saying he's going for the kill. I'm always rooting for Deontay, especially against a guy from across the pond. I don't see how other people go for another countryman. I don't get it, because at the end of the day Tyson Fury is going for his guys. He's not going to be for the American fighter. I feel that should be the same way with us but it's never like that. Americans don't rock with Americans … it’s backward for Americans.”
Spence is speaking from a position of experience when it comes to receiving support from non-Americans.
In 2017, he had to travel to Sheffield, England for his first world title opportunity when he beat British boxer Kell Brook for the IBF title he still owns.
Outside of Spence’s team, it would be difficult to count the number of supporters there that night to cheer on the Texan.
Manouk Akopyan is a sports journalist, writer and broadcast reporter. He’s also a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America and MMA Journalists Association. He can be reached on Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn and YouTube at @ManoukAkopyan, via email at manouk[dot]akopyan[at]gmail.com or on www.ManoukAkopyan.com