Former heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder has embraced the role of being an outspoken athlete - and he wants to be as outspoken as one of his idols, the legendary Muhammad Ali. (photo by Ryan Hafey)

Wilder is currently preparing for a heated trilogy fight with WBC world champion Tyson Fury, which is scheduled to take place on July 24th at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

Back in February 2020, Fury stopped Wilder in seven rounds to capture the WBC title.

In the aftermath of that loss, Wilder did not hold back with his allegations of misconduct in the contest. He claimed Fury had loaded his gloves with weights, that former co-trainer Mark Breland was a double-agent, and even alleged that referee Kenny Bayless may have been intoxicated.

Whether it's inside or outside of the ring, Wilder has vowed to stand tall and speak his mind in the same manner as the Hall of Famer he idolizes.

"With Ali, to take a stand not only inside the ring but outside the ring, he was considered one of the most hated men in America," Wilder told 78SPORTSTV.

"Then you got Deontay Wilder come along to take that same stand outside and inside the ring, it seem like it ain’t enough, it seem like they have these buck-dancers that dance in our kind to go against us and try it down. But you can’t buck-break me, man, I’m chosen. Ali is one of my idols in boxing, I appreciate to be compared to him, and I can see the comparison of what he stood for.

"Especially in the times he did it in, the years he did it in - man, oh my goodness, I just want to take that same stand here, because I’m not afraid. You have so many other guys in this world who have a stronger platform than I but they don’t have the nerve, they don’t have the courage to take a stand like I do, so they stay quiet - they wait on guys like me to speak out.”