LAS VEGAS — Tyson Fury got up from two fourth-round knockdowns and stopped Deontay Wilder in the 11th round Saturday night, retaining his WBC title in a thrilling conclusion to a superlative heavyweight trilogy.
Fury (31-0-1, 22 KOs) finished Wilder for the second straight time in their trilogy, but only after a wild back-and-forth bout featuring five combined knockdowns.
Wilder was knocked down in the third round and appeared to be on his way out, but he improbably rallied to knock down Fury twice in the final minutes of the fourth round.
Wilder (42-2-1) absorbed enormous punishment and appeared to be physically drained for much of the bout, but the veteran champion showed his toughness while still throwing power shots on weary legs.
Fury knocked down Wilder again with a concussive right hand midway through the 10th, but Wilder stunned Fury in the final seconds.
Fury finally finished it in the 11th, sending Wilder face-first to the canvas with a chopping right hand fired from high in the air. Fury climbed onto the ropes in weary celebration before a frenzied crowd of 15,820 at T-Mobile Arena on the south end of the Las Vegas Strip.
The fight likely concluded one of the most memorable heavyweight rivalries in recent boxing history. A trilogy is a rarity in the fractured modern sport, but Fury and Wilder brought out the best in each other through a series spanning nearly three calendar years.