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Paul Williams vs. Pavlik in September?

pav57274By Sean McDaniel: lAccording to the latest boxing news, WBC/WBO middleweight champion Kelly Pavlik (35-1, 31 KO’s) could be facing WBO light middleweight champion Paul Williams (37-1, 27 KO’s) later on this year in September, according to Max Boxing.

Pavlik’s trainer Jack Leow had said recently that Pavlik’s next opponent was going to be someone big, but I never imagined that Pavlik would step it up this big by taking on the 6’2″ Williams.

If this fight can come off, this would be a huge fight for Pavlik. According to reports, there’s disagreement about the purse split, with Pavlik’s side wanting the larger 70-30 purse split. Williams side wants a fairer split, but it’s doubtful that they’ll be able to get much better than that because Pavlik is the better known fighter at this point, although that will probably change in the next year or two as Williams continues to rack up wins like his last fight, a dominating 12 round decision over Ronald “Winky” Wright in April.

He needs a good opponent to get his career back in order after losing a 12 round decision to Bernard Hopkins in October. Until recently, promoter Bob Arum had been wanting to match Pavlik against Sergio Mora, a fight that few boxing fans were interested in seeing, but with Pavlik’s staph infection wiping that fight out, it freed him up to fight another opponent.

Williams, 27, would be a very tough opponent for Pavlik to beat. Williams may not be a big puncher by any stretch of the imagination, but he can throw a lot of punches and potentially outwork Pavlik much in the same way that Hopkins did in his fight with Pavlik. Williams may have a better work rate than Pavlik, but he doesn’t punch anywhere near as hard as him.

This wouldn’t be a fight where Williams could camp in front of Pavlik and trade shots with him because Pavlik thrives on opponents that stand directly in front of him and let him get his shots off. As of yet, there hasn’t been any fighter that’s been able to beat Pavlik by standing in front of him.

Fighters like Edison Miranda, Jermain Taylor, Jose Luis Zertuche and Fulgencio Zuniga have failed when they try to match Pavlik power for power. Williams will have to come up with another strategy to win in a fight with a puncher like Pavlik. Williams would be giving up some size in this fight.

Williams was a welterweight until late last year when Williams moved up to light middleweight. Recently, Williams moved up to middleweight in a fight with Wright. Williams did a good job against Wright, essentially overwhelming Wright with punches. However, this wasn’t a fight where Williams had to worry about getting hit with a steady of huge power shots like he would be if he were to take on the 27-year-old Pavlik.

However, Williams has proved in his rematch with Carlos Quintana, who out-boxed Williams beating him by a 12 round decision in February 2008, that he can adjust. Williams came out looking completely different in the rematch four months later, beating Quintana by a 1st round knockout in June 2008. Williams would likely have to use movement like Hopkins did if he has any hopes of beating Pavlik.

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