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Paul Williams defeats Sergio Martinez

By Jim Dower: World Boxing Organization interim light middleweight champion Paul Williams (38-1, 27 KOs) defeated WBC light middleweight champion Sergio Martinez (44-2-2, 24 KOs) by a 12 round majority decision at the Boardwalk Hall, in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Martinez knocked Williams down in the 1st round, but Williams repaid the favor by knocking Martinez down as well. The final judges’ scores for the fight were 115-113, 119-110 and 114-114.

Martinez looked really good in the first three to four rounds, but he had problems after that with Williams’ long arms and nonstop punching. Martinez seemed to hurt his case by moving too much and not focusing more on his offense. He tried to pot shot Williams, but had problems with Williams’ combinations.

After the 4th round, Williams seemed to pull away from Martinez and get the better of him in the remainder of the fight. It was nice that Martinez was landing an occasional pot shot and hitting Williams cleanly with the harder shots from time to time, but Williams was putting a lot of punches together and out-landing Martinez by a significant margin. For every six to eight punches from Williams, Martinez would land one shot, and they weren’t always the harder shots. in most cases, they were no harder than Williams’ punches.

In the 5th round, Martinez moved around the ring constantly, his hands down by his sides looking to land a quick shot. Williams wasn’t bothered by Martinez’s movement, as he continued to track him down and throw a lot of punches. Some of them missed, but many of them connected cleanly. In the 6th round, Williams looked like the much better fighter, landing at a significantly higher number of shots. Martinez landed next to nothing during the entire round. It was really one-sided.

The 7th round was close, as Martinez finally started throwing punches again, and landed some nice shots. Still, however, Williams was the busier fighter and landed more punches once again. I couldn’t give the round to Martinez because he just wasn’t putting in the work and was still running all over the place trying to avoid Williams.

Martinez continued to fight reasonably well into the 8th round, landing the cleaner shots, although still getting outworked by Williams and running much of the time. The running was off putting and hard for me to give Martinez as much credit. However, he appeared to win the round by a whisker.

In the 9th round, Martinez’s momentum ground to a halt as he spent too much time running and not enough time punching. He looked like he was trying to avoid the fight for some reason. It wasn’t movement to get in punching range. I saw movement to avoid fighting. And on top of that, Martinez, again, didn’t throw or land enough punches.

In rounds ten through twelve, Williams was the clear winner of those rounds, simply because Martinez wasn’t throwing anywhere near the same amount of punches that Williams. There was long stretches where Williams was the only one throwing and landing. Martinez looked like he was running for his life and looked all of his age.

In the end, I could only give Martinez roughly two rounds, possibly three at the most. He just didn’t do enough and his running caused him to lose the fight in my view.

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