Las Vegas – Tyson Fury rebounded from two knockdowns in the fourth round and stopped Deontay Wilder in the eleventh round on Saturday night, retaining his WBC title in an exciting conclusion to a superlative heavyweight trilogy.
Fury (31-0-1, 22 KOs) finished off Wilder for the second time in a row in his trilogy, but only after a wild back-and-forth fight with five combined knockdowns.
Wilder was knocked down in the third round and appeared to be out, but improbably rallied to knock Fury down twice in the final minutes of the fourth round.
Wilder (42-2-1) absorbed a massive punishment and appeared to be physically drained for much of the fight, but the veteran champion showed his toughness as he continued to deliver powerful punches on tired legs.
Fury dropped Wilder again with a right-hand concussion in the middle of the tenth, but Wilder surprised Fury by getting up in the dying seconds.
Fury finally finished it at the 11th, sending Wilder facing the canvas with a slashing right fired from high in the air. Fury jumped on the ropes in a celebration before a frenzied crowd of 15,820 at the T-Mobile Arena at the south end of the Las Vegas Strip.
The fight probably concluded one of the most memorable heavyweight rivalries in recent boxing history. A trilogy is a rarity in fractured modern sport, but Fury and Wilder brought out the best in each other through a series spanning nearly three calendar years.