The Deontay Wilder-Gerald Washington fight on Saturday night has received plenty of hype. It’ll be the first major network show of the year for Premier Boxing Champions, and Wilder is one of the best heavyweights in the world. He’s fun to watch and fun to listen to afterward, and if his past ratings are any indication, the Fox telecast that begins at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT will be watched by plenty of people.

But the actual bout itself will probably be a one-sided affair that will end in Wilder (37-0, 36 KOs) , knocking out Washington (18-0-1, 12 KOs), a former NFL practice squad who has been a pro fighter for less than five years and who now finds himself competing for a portion of the heavyweight championship.

One must wonder if Wilder’s recent courtroom fight vs. Alexander Povetkin, which netted Wilder the $4.5 million he would have earned if Povetkin hadn’t failed a drug test before their scheduled fight last year, has distracted him in the leadup to this fight.

Wilder said it could have, and making matters even more difficult for him was that he originally was scheduled to fight Andrzej Wawrzyk, who ended up failing his own drug test and was replaced by Washington. But that bit of adversity faced by Wilder is but one reason to watch the fight. Sure, Washington is a 10/1 underdog, but here are three other reasons you should watch the telecast, which also includes what should be an exciting junior middleweight title match between Tony Harrison and Jarrett Hurd.

1) How will Wilder respond to his long layoff and his injuries? While in the process of knocking out Chris Arreola last July, Wilder tore his biceps muscle and broke his right hand. Still, he managed to do this to Arreola.

Now, it’s clear Wilder is hungering to return. “This is a dangerous sport, man,” Wilder recently said on a media teleconference. “Every time I fight I always ask myself the question. Do you really want to do this? Do you still want to do this? Do you really want to go and get your head hit by big guys with these small gloves? I ask myself that question every fight. But at the end of the day I am still here because I am in love with it. It is just like a woman. A man can do so much to her but she still there because she loves him.” Still, look at his right hand throughout the fight to see how it’s holding up to the pressure.

2) Washington has an interesting back story that probably won’t help him vs. Wilder, but hey, it’s a cool tale anyway. He served four years in the U.S. Navy as a helicopter mechanic, and he played college football at the University of Southern California. Washington also spent time as a member of the NFL practice squads for the Seahawks and the Bills. Then, he turned pro in 2012, and his biggest wins have come against Eddie Chambers and Ray Austin, once solid fighters who were way past their primes by the time Washington fought them. So, how could Washington upset Wilder? A better mental game. “I have got to come prepared mentally and physically and just put it all on the line," Washington said. "Like I said, it is going to take a mixture of everything. Everything that I know to go up against him. I only have 14 amateur fights. I only have 19 professional fights. I don’t have all that experience that this guy has. So it is going to take a lot of smarts for me and … mental toughness to get through this.”

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Here’s some of Washington’s best work.

3) A win vs. Washington, and the future could get fun for Wilder. Perhaps he’ll face the winner of before the end of the year. After all, this is what Joshua said this week. "Wilder has been a professional for around eight to nine years and I want to see a bit more …" Joshua said, via. "I’m speaking from a fan’s perspective, because I get it. … After nine years as a fan, I’m saying, ‘Wilder, we want more from you’, and there is nothing wrong with that.” Assuming he wins Saturday, Wilder said he wants a unification bout with heavyweight titlist Joseph Parker. Then, after he wins Parker’s belt, he said he’ll put his two belts up against the Joshua-Klitschko winner, who will hold the other two major heavyweight belts, and unify the whole division.

The May 6 Canelo Alvarez-Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. fight promises to bring in hundreds of thousands of PPV buys and millions of dollars for the fighters. Now, Alvarez and Chavez will have you believe they’ve made a bet that the winner of the fight takes it all.

Is that true? We have our doubts that the loser won’t make any money for the fight. But it is an interesting PR twist in what already should be a fun event.

“I’m not even sure our deputy attorney general would even allow it — betting purses is a lot of money and doesn’t seem like a wise thing to do,” Nevada State Athletic Commission executive director Bob Bennett told the . “If they want to put that in their new contract, then I’d see, but we don’t condone our fighters betting against each other for their purses. It’s never been done in my time here.”

The fight is contracted at a catch-weight of 164.5 pounds, and it’ll cost Alvarez, who has a habit of being overweight for bouts, if he misses weight. Which might mean this supposed bet isn’t such a big risk for Alvarez after all.

It’s been a great 2017 for Showtime and the ratings its boxing program has delivered so far. Although HBO was the channel for highest-rated premium cable boxing telecasts in 2016, Showtime has put on two exciting cards this year and now has been rewarded for it.

Last Saturday, Showtime scored an average of 779,000 viewers and a peak of 859,000 viewers for the Adrien Broner-Adrian Granados fight card, according to . It’s the most that have watched a Showtime boxing event since Deontay Wilder vs. Bermane Stiverne in January 2015.

Those ratings come only a couple weeks after Showtime’s Carl Frampton-Leo Santa Cruz II card (587,000 average; 643,000 peak) ’s Miguel Berchelt-Francisco Vargas card (497,000 average; 549,000 peak).

Though Showtime had a free preview weekend last week, those non-subscribed viewers were not recorded by Nielsen Media Research.

This article was sourced from http://pgcruises-newsletters.com