3 possible next opponents for Oleksandr Usyk

Here's who we think Oleksandr Usyk should fight after handing Tyson Fury his first loss.
Tyson Fury v Oleksandr Usyk: Ring Of Fire - Fight Night
Tyson Fury v Oleksandr Usyk: Ring Of Fire - Fight Night / Richard Pelham/GettyImages
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2. Deontay Wilder

At this point, mentioning former WBC heavyweight titleholder Deontay Wilder (43-3-1, 42 KOs) as an opponent for Usyk is controversial. The knockout artist was stopped twice by Fury and was recently outclassed by Joseph Parker last year in a fight where he barely won a round. Over the last five years, Wilder has been victorious, once scoring a first-round stoppage over Robert Helenius in 2022. 

But knockouts are a type of cure, especially for a fighter's reputation in the minds of fans. Wilder has an upcoming match with Zhilei Zhang in June, and should he score a knockout victory, a match with Usyk wouldn't sound as perplexing. 

Throughout his career, Usyk has been a road warrior. He has defeated world champions on their home turf in multiple instances and hasn't fought in his native Ukraine since 2015. The combat sports landscape has changed drastically since the last undisputed heavyweight champion, Lennox Lewis, reigned supreme. The United States is no longer the sole hub of the sport. Many fighters, including Usyk, have found success and lucrative opportunities outside their home countries.

Usyk has fought three times in the United States, and if he and his team plan to endear themselves to the American market, a fight against Wilder might prove to be the best option. At a minimum, Wilder is still a threat with a puncher's chance. 

Unlike most of Usyk's heavyweight opponents, Wilder is around the same weight range. A match against him could be the perfect opportunity for Usyk to showcase his skills and win over the American audience.