Deontay Wilder has been forced to apologise after decking a mascot with a brutal punch on live TV.
The heavyweight world champion unleashed a massive punch that knocked down the mascot on an ESPN program recently.
Wilder, appearing on ESPN Nacion to promote his December title fight against Britain’s Tyson Fury, was asked to demonstrate his punching power by striking the mascot — a man inside a burrito-themed foam costume.
The blow knocked the sombrero-wearing mascot to the ground, with conflicting reports suggesting he suffered a broken jaw.
“I sincerely apologise to the brave man that was injured (if this is true),” Wilder wrote on Instagram.
“I have the up most (sic) high respect for him, his participation, willingness and courage.
“If this is true @nacionespn I personally would like to invite him to my Dec.1 fight.”
Wilder also refuted reports that he didn’t realise there was a person inside the costume.
“Anything headlining I didn’t know a human being was in there is just straight click-baiting,” said Wilder on Instagram.
Wilder, the World Boxing Organisation champion, is unbeaten in 40 bouts.
He takes on former world champion Fury in Los Angeles on December 1.