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Deontay Wilder gives tearful press conference after knocking out Robert Helenius

Deontay Wilder knocked out Robert Helenius in the first round on Saturday

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Deontay Wilder broke down at the post-fight press conference after his victory over Robert Helenius on Saturday (15 October), as the American addressed the dangers present in boxing.

Wilder, fighting for the first time since suffering a second straight stoppage loss to Tyson Fury, knocked out Helenius, 38, in the first round in Brooklyn.

Both heavyweights had been out of the ring for 12 months ahead of the main-event contest, which ended with a short right hand from Wilder, who turns 37 this week.

Expressing concern for Swedish-born Finn Helenius, the American said: “Yeah, it’s a great knockout, it’s devastating, making history and stuff like that, but how much is that man gonna suffer?

“He may be alright right now – a little bit – but what about the next day? What about two weeks from now? What about a month from now? Maybe years from now?

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“We’ve seen what happened, look at [Prichard] Colon. This man ain’t have no kids…” Wilder said, referencing his compatriot and fellow boxer who suffered a brain injury in a 2015 fight, before trailing off in tears.

“Y’all don’t f***ing understand what we go through, man. I don’t even know him like that, but I’ll always be an advocate for us.

“This man will never know what it feels like to be somebody’s father. And that’s [one of the most] precious things in the world, to be somebody’s father.

“But he will never be nobody’s father, man […] because he got in the ring to support his family. Now his family gotta take care of him for the rest of his life. He probably was the bread-winner of his family, and now they’re looking, seeking for help and s*** like that.”

Wilder, backed into the corner, finished Helenius with a one-punch KO

Colon, 30, was 23 when he suffered brain bleeding after a fight with Terrel Williams and subsequently went into a coma for more than 200 days.

The American has since undergone physical therapy and is able to respond to verbal commands.

“This is serious, we don’t know if Robert’s gonna be the same after this,” Wilder added.

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“I don’t mean to take people away from their lifestyle of living. I’m just trying to support my family as well. This is what we signed up to do.

“Robert could be the bread-winner of his family, but what if he can’t do it no more? Then what? Who pays the bills? Who pays the mortgage? He has kids; who would look out for his kids?”

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