Deontay Wilder vs Joseph Parker Picks and Predictions: Wilder Has To Work for W

Deontay makes his return to the squared circle and has to get through Joshua Parker to finally punch his ticket against Anthony Joshua. Our betting picks believe Wilder to pick up the win, but it won't be easier than his -600 odds suggest.

Dec 23, 2023 • 14:13 ET • 4 min read
Deontay Wilder Boxing
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

Deontay Wilder returns to the ring and faces off against Joseph Parker in a heavyweight battle that can’t be missed later today from the Kingdom Arena in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

This battle between two former heavyweight champions serves as Wilder’s last hurdle before finally getting his shot at generational rival Anthony Joshua in 2024.

Boxing odds have the inactive Wildera huge -600 favorite, and Parker is a +425 underdog. Here are my free picks for Wilder vs. Parker from Riyadh.

Wilder vs Parker odds

Method of victory Deontay Wilder Joseph Parker
Win outright -650 +450
Win by KO/TKO/DQ -400 +1,100
Win by points or decision +650 +800
Draw +2,500 +2,500

Odds courtesy of DraftKings as of December 23, 2023.

Wilder vs Parker betting predictions

Picks made on December 23. Click on each pick to jump to the full analysis.

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Wilder vs Parker boxing prediction and best bet

Prediction: Deontay Wilder ML

Along with the main event of Joshua vs. Wallin, this is a fight where the A-side could potentially get upset. We haven’t seen Wilder in the ring since October 2022, and that was less than one round against Robert Helenius.

The last time Wilder put in a solid night’s work was the brutal beating at the hands of Tyson Fury in their third fight. Parker is by no means a tune up and has the tools along with the intangibles to give Wilder a scare.

Parker is younger, can box and fight, and has only lost against elite heavyweights at the peak of their power. Beating Parker would possibly be the best win of Wilder’s career, and the odds aren’t doing the former heavyweight champion justice. However, it has everything to do with Wilder’s blistering power and Parker’s propensity to get caught by big shots. 

It wouldn’t surprise me that Parker ends up being more trouble than expected, and starts giving the 38-year-old a scare before the ring rust comes off. Wilder — always patient and looking for a spot to land his right hand — will eventually make the most of the opportunity and change the direction of the fight instantly.

I can’t see Parker fighting a perfect fight, or surviving some of the shots Fury did in his three fights with Wilder. Eventually, Wilder will close the gap, and that’s why I’m picking him to win.

Prediction: Deontay Wilder moneyline (-600 at DraftKings)

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Best bet: Over 6.5 rounds

Because of Wilder’s inactivity and Parker’s knowabouts in the ring, it might be wise to rule out an early stoppage. Parker’s shown enough mobility and boxing ability to keep Wilder honest, and the simple Wilder is willing to give up rounds knowing his power can bail him out. Four of Wilder’s last six fights have gone past the halfway point, and Parker tends to get vulnerable towards the end of the bput.

I believe Parker can exploit Wilder’s inactivity and predictable offense for some time. However, Parker tends to get risky and might take a chance that puts him in a bad spot. He’s likely to survive into the middle rounds primarily because he’ll respect Wilder’s power early on, and might want to gauge his opponent’s movement and resolve after a significant layoff.

If there is a stoppage, it'll come in the back end of the fight. Considering Parker’s durability and toughness, he could potentially threaten to take Wilder the distance. I’m going with the fight lasting Over 6.5 rounds as my best bet.

Prediction: Over 6.5 rounds (-115 at DraftKings)

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Wilder vs Parker betting preview

Former WBC heavyweight champion Wilder has been inactive since October 2022, and several questions remain about his mental state and desire to compete in the sport. At 38, Wilder is intent on chasing the kind of paydays found in the desert with a mega fight with Joshua within his grasp. The ex-champ is best known for his savage trilogy with Fury but also has wins against the likes of Luis Ortiz, Bermane Stiverne, and Arthur Szpilka.

Parker reigned as the WBO champion from 2016-2018 and has remained a consensus top heavyweight following his title loss to Joshua. The New Zealander has a stiff jab with steady technique and can turn up the intensity for better or worse. He's tested his mettle, only falling to the likes of Joshua, Dillian Whyte, and Joe Joyce while beating Andy Ruiz, Derek Chisora, and Junior Fa.

Wilder’s right hand is the best weapon in the modern boxing era, and it'll be up to Parker to effectively evade that punch while bringing the fight to his inactive opponent. Parker can box, but he’s also an underrated inside fighter who can get rough if necessary.

For Wilder to secure the long-awaited fight with Joshua, he must work behind the long range of his jab, forcing Parker backward, and line him up for the potential kill shot.

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