Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The weekend's biggest sporting event is Wilder-Fury II, which despite its name is not an action movie sequel starring Jean-Claude Van Damme but, rather, a boxing match starring arguably the two best heavyweights in the world.

The backdrop: In their first meeting in December 2018, Deontay Wilder and Tyson Fury put on a memorable show at Staples Center, with Fury surviving a brutal right hand in the 12th round to earn a split-decision draw.

Key players:

  • Wilder (42-0-1), a 34-year-old from Tuscaloosa, Ala., who has what ESPN's Max Kellerman calls "the single most devastating knockout punch in the history of boxing."
  • Fury (29-0-1), a 31-year-old from Manchester, England, who stands 6-foot-9-inches and is one of the most charismatic people in the sport.

Fight preview: Wilder will be vying to break Muhammad Ali's record of 10 consecutive heavyweight title defenses. The odds are about even, and the experts are split. If there was ever a time to spend $8o on a boxing match, this is it.

  • Where: MGM Grand (Las Vegas)
  • When: Saturday, 9 p.m. ET
  • Odds: Wilder -125 (bet $125 to win $100); Fury +105 (bet $100 to win $105)
  • Cost: $79.99
  • Where to buy: ESPN+ (PPV), Fox (PPV), Fox Sports Go (PPV), BT Sport Box Office (U.K. only, PPV)

By the numbers: Wilder has the highest knockout percentage, 95.3% (41-43), of any heavyweight champion, and Fury is the only fighter he's never knocked out.

The big picture: With global streaming service DAZN disrupting boxing's pay-per-view model by making fights free for paid subscribers ($19.99/month), a lot is riding on how many people buy Wilder-Fury II, which is being co-produced by ESPN (Fury) and Fox (Wilder).

"If a fight this appetizing fails to generate an impressive number of buys, that could signal the beginning of the end of the 60-year relationship between boxing and pay-per-view."
— Kelefa Sanneh, The New Yorker

🇺🇸 "The Bronze Bomber" ... ESPN's Mark Kriegel writes about Wilder's late introduction to boxing and the return of the great American heavyweight...

  • "A 19-year-old former high school basketball player tries to walk on at the local community college when he learns his daughter will be born with spina bifida. She'll need multiple surgeries, just for starters. He drops out of school and gets a job at Red Lobster. Then IHOP. Then he walks into a local boxing gym, which itself is not easy to find in west-central Alabama.
  • "He has no expectation of fame or fortune — just quick cash as an opponent. He also has a 4 a.m. route delivering kegs for a local beer distributor. Doesn't matter. Still not enough money. It's not working out with his daughter's mother, either. He is heartbroken. He is ashamed of himself."
  • "But along the way, the fighter finds something. It wasn't just a right hand — more like a superpower. Less than three years after he walked into the gym, at 22, he medals at the Beijing Olympics. At 29, he wins the WBC heavyweight title. ... Meanwhile, he sees to it that his daughter has everything she ever needs. ... And he keeps knocking people out — in a manner never quite seen before."

Go deeper: Boxing's biggest fight is happening outside the ring

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Graham hopes his panel will approve Amy Coney Barrett by late October

Chair Lindsey Graham during a Senate Judiciary Committee business meeting on Capitol Hill Thursday. Photo: Jabin Botsford/The Washington Post via Getty Images

Senate Judiciary Committee Chair Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) told Fox News Saturday he expects confirmation hearings on Judge Amy Coney Barrett's nomination to the Supreme Court to start Oct. 12 and for his panel to approve her by Oct. 26.

Why it matters: That would mean the final confirmation vote could take place on the Senate floor before the Nov. 3 presidential election.

Texas city declares disaster after brain-eating amoeba found in water supply

Characteristics associated with a case of amebic meningoencephalitis due to Naegleria fowleri parasites. Photo: Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

Texas authorities have issued a warning amid concerns that the water supply in the southeast of the state may contain the brain-eating amoeba naegleria fowleri following the death of a 6-year-old boy.

Details: The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality issued a "do not use" water alert Friday for eight cities, along with the Clemens and Wayne Scott Texas Department of Criminal Justice corrections centers and the Dow Chemical plant in Freeport. This was later lifted for all places but one, Lake Jackson, which issued a disaster declaration Saturday.

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 9:30 p.m. ET: 32,746,147 — Total deaths: 991,678 — Total recoveries: 22,588,064Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 9:30 p.m. ET: 7,007,450 — Total deaths: 204,486 — Total recoveries: 2,750,459 — Total tests: 100,492,536Map.
  3. States: New York daily cases top 1,000 for first time since June — U.S. reports over 55,000 new coronavirus cases.
  4. Health: The long-term pain of the mental health pandemicFewer than 10% of Americans have coronavirus antibodies.
  5. Business: Millions start new businesses in time of coronavirus.
  6. Education: Summer college enrollment offers a glimpse of COVID-19's effect.