Paul Williams (boxer)

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Paul Williams
Paul Williams (boxer).jpg
Williams in 2010
Nickname(s) The Punisher
Rated at Welterweight
Light middleweight
Height 6 ft 1 12 in (187 cm)
Reach 79 in (201 cm)
Nationality American
Born (1981-07-27) July 27, 1981 (age 35)
Augusta, Georgia, U.S.
Stance Southpaw
Boxing record
Total fights 43
Wins 41
Wins by KO 27
Losses 2

Paul Williams (born July 27, 1981) is an American former professional boxer. He is a two-time WBO welterweight and interim light middleweight champion.

Standing at a height of 6' 1½", Williams was unusually tall for the three divisions he campaigned in: welterweight, light middleweight and middleweight. He holds notable victories over world champions such as Winky Wright, Kermit Cintron, Carlos Quintana, Sharmba Mitchell, Erislandy Lara, Sergio Martínez and Antonio Margarito. A motorcycle accident on May 27, 2012 paralyzed Williams from the waist down, ending his boxing career.[1][2]

Professional career[edit]

Early years at welterweight[edit]

His debut was in the year 2000. He is promoted by the Goossens. In 2005 he outpointed former Olympic bronze medalist Terrence Cauthen and, later that year, he knocked out Alfonso Sanchez in 5 rounds. His ESPN debut was a second round knockout of Sergio Rios on Wednesday Night Fights. Williams made his HBO debut against then-undefeated Walter Matthysse, winning by a tenth round technical knockout.[Video 1] That was followed by a victory over former junior welterweight world champion Sharmba Mitchell. He knocked Mitchell down three times en route to a fourth round TKO.

WBO Welterweight Championship[edit]

Williams became the mandatory challenger for WBO Welterweight Champion Antonio Margarito. The match took place July 14, 2007, in Carson, California, at the Home Depot Center with Williams winning a unanimous decision in which turned out to be a close fight where Williams' seemingly stronger finish seemed to seal him the decision victory in the eyes of boxing experts and fans alike. Williams fought Carlos Quintana on February 9, 2008 in his first defense of his title. Williams lost to Quintana by decision in what many considered a minor upset.

Williams and Quintana had a rematch at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, Connecticut on June 7, 2008 for the WBO Welterweight title, at Williams' request. Williams got off to a quick start when a left hand sent Quintana into a daze as several follow-up barrages put Quintana down. He got up, but Williams opened up with dozens of unanswered punches as the referee jumped in to stop the fight while Quintana was going down again.[3]

Williams was rumored to be moving up two weight classes to fight Kelly Pavlik for the WBC Middleweight title but instead Pavlik himself decided to move up two weight classes himself to fight Bernard Hopkins. Williams fought Andy Kolle on September 25. Williams dominated the fight from the start and recorded a first round knockout in 1:37 seconds.

Light Middleweight[edit]

After failing to secure another meaningful contest at welterweight, Williams vacated his WBO welterweight title in order to fight Verno Phillips for the WBO Interim Light Middleweight title.

On November 29, 2008, Williams defeated Phillips by way of TKO after 8 rounds after the Doctor stopped the fight. In doing so he secured the WBO Interim Light Middleweight title.[4]


Winky Wright[edit]

Williams fought Winky Wright on April 11, 2009, in a 12-round middleweight bout featured on HBO.[5] Williams defeated Wright in a unanimous decision which was not close on the scorecards – two of the three judges gave Williams all but one round while the third scored all 12 rounds for Williams.

Williams was then preparing to fight Middleweight Champion Kelly Pavlik in a bout scheduled to take place on October 3, 2009 in Atlantic City, New Jersey.[6] The bout was postponed when it was discovered Pavlik had a staph infection in his knuckle and had been rescheduled for December 5. However, the bout was called off for a second time six weeks prior to the fight because Pavlik's infection had not completely healed.[7]

Sergio Martínez[edit]

On December 5, 2009 Paul Williams fought Sergio Martínez in a war of a twelve round main event. In the first round Martinez was knocked down due to bad balance and a grazing left hand that landed just below the ear. In the final seconds of the 1st round though Martinez scored a knockdown of his own over Williams. The next two rounds were heavily in Martinez's favor as he hit Williams with barrages of counter punches. After Martinez was seemingly won the first 3 rounds, rounds 4-7 showed Williams coming back effectively landing hard lefts to the head of Martinez. In rounds 8-10 Martinez again confused Williams with using different varieties of punches, including straight lead lefts to the body followed by right hooks to the head and straight lefts to the face. The final 2 rounds showed much fatigue in Martinez and Williams but both warriors fought through to the end, although Williams seemed to win both of the last 2 rounds by being the far more active boxer (while the punching exchanges were very closely contested during those final 2 rounds as well), which would ultimately prove to be the difference and as a result of having far superior activity during those final 2 rounds, Williams won a close majority decision over Martinez. The judges scored the fight 114-114, 115-113 for Williams and 119-110 for Williams, thus making Williams emerge as the majority decision winner.

Kermit Cintron[edit]

After his close win over Sergio Martínez, Paul Williams moved on to face Puerto Rican prospect Kermit Cintrón. The two met on May 8, 2010 Live on Saturday Night HBO Boxing. In the fourth round, Kermit Cintron fell out of the ring unintentionally and was not allowed to continue fighting due to hitting the arena floor. Williams was ahead on two of the three judges' scorecards at the time of the stoppage and was declared the winner by split technical decision.[8] Cintron, who believed he should have been ahead on the scorecards, filed a complaint to have the ruling changed to a no-contest, claiming he was not given the five-minute recovery time allowed under California rules.[9]

Williams vs Martinez II[edit]

Williams before the Martínez fight in November 2010

A highly anticipated rematch with Sergio Martinez eventually materialized at Boardwalk Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey on November 20, 2010. Upon the Williams camp's insistence, the fight was contested at the catchweight limit of 158 pounds instead of the middleweight limit of 160, with Martinez's WBC Middleweight title on the line.[10] The fight was billed as a potential "fight-of-the-year," however the fight ended abruptly and dramatically when Sergio Martinez delivered a knockout blow with 2:02 left in the 2nd round. The punch was a short left cross that caught Williams right on the chin as he attempted to deliver a left-hand of his own. Williams' right hand was at his waist when the punch landed, rendering Paul Williams unconscious upon contact.

Erislandy Lara[edit]

On July 9, 2011, Paul Williams fought in a light middleweight contest in Atlantic City against former Cuban amateur sensation Erislandy Lara. Throughout the fight, Lara repeatedly hit Williams with hard left hands and appeared to have won the fight convincingly in the eyes of the HBO crew and those sitting at ringside.[11][12][13] However, the judges awarded Williams with a narrow majority decision, a highly controversial verdict that ultimately led to the suspension of the three judges by the New Jersey Athletic Control Board. [14][15]

Motorcycle accident and paralysis[edit]

On May 27, 2012, Williams was severely injured when he crashed his motorcycle in Georgia. He swerved to avoid hitting a car while traveling at about 75 mph on the motorcycle and was launched sixty feet. Witnesses say he landed on his head and his body "folded like a suitcase."[Video 2] The accident left him with a part of his spinal cord severely bruised, paralyzing him from the waist down. Since it was bruised and not severed, it gives him a chance to regain sensation.[1][2] The doctors told Williams the swelling could go down in a year or two, potentially giving him a chance of walking again. The accident came as Williams was preparing for his PPV main event against Canelo Alvarez on September 15.[16] "I'm just chilling in a wheelchair because I got tired of walking," Williams said in an interview with Jim Gray on Showtime Championship Boxing on the day he was supposed to fight. "Whether I am walking or not walking, my game ain't over until the Lord takes my life."[17][Video 2]

Professional boxing record[edit]

41 Wins (27 knockouts, 13 decisions, 1 disqualification), 2 Losses (1 knockout, 1 decision), 0 Draws[18]
Res. Record Opponent Type Rd., Time Date Location Notes
Win 41–2 Japan Nobuhiro Ishida UD 12 2012-02-18 United States American Bank Center, Corpus Christi, Texas Won vacant WBC International Silver Middleweight title.
Win 40–2 Cuba Erislandy Lara MD 12 2011-07-09 United States Boardwalk Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey WBC Light Middleweight Title Eliminator.
Loss 39–2 Argentina Sergio Martínez KO 2 (12), 1:10 2010-11-20 United States Boardwalk Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey For The Ring & WBC Middleweight titles.
Win 39–1 Puerto Rico Kermit Cintrón TD 4 (12) 2010-05-08 United States The Home Depot Center, Carson, California
Win 38–1 Argentina Sergio Martínez MD 12 2009-12-05 United States Boardwalk Hall, Atlantic City, New Jersey
Win 37–1 United States Winky Wright UD 12 2009-04-11 United States Mandalay Bay Events Center, Las Vegas, Nevada
Win 36–1 United States Verno Phillips TKO 8 (12), 3:00 2008-11-29 United States Citizens Business Bank Arena, Ontario, California Won interim WBO Light Middleweight title.
Win 35–1 United States Andy Kolle TKO 1 (10), 1:37 2008-09-25 United States Soboba Casino, San Jacinto, California
Win 34–1 Puerto Rico Carlos Quintana TKO 1 (12), 2:15 2008-06-07 United States Mohegan Sun, Uncasville, Connecticut Won WBO Welterweight title.
Loss 33–1 Puerto Rico Carlos Quintana UD 12 2008-02-09 United States Pechanga Resort & Casino, Temecula, California Lost WBO Welterweight title.
Win 33–0 Mexico Antonio Margarito UD 12 2007-07-14 United States The Home Depot Center, Carson, California Won WBO Welterweight title.
Win 32–0 New Zealand Santos Pakau TKO 6 (10), 2:16 2006-11-04 United States Mandalay Bay Events Center, Las Vegas, Nevada
Win 31–0 United States Sharmba Mitchell KO 4 (12), 2:57 2006-08-19 United States Reno Events Center, Reno, Nevada Retained WBO NABO and WBC United States USNBC Welterweight titles.
Win 30–0 Argentina Walter Dario Matthysse TKO 10 (12), 1:56 2006-05-27 United States The Home Depot Center, Carson, California Won vacant WBO NABO Welterweight title.
Win 29–0 Mexico Sergio Rios KO 2 (10), 2:24 2006-04-12 United States Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino, Lemoore, California Won WBC United States USNBC Welterweight title.
Win 28–0 Mexico Alfonso Sanchez KO 5 (10), 1:12 2005-12-02 United States Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino, Lemoore, California
Win 27–0 United States Marteze Logan UD 8 2005-09-30 United States Cache Creek Casino Resort, Brooks, California
Win 26–0 United States Terrance Cauthen UD 10 2005-04-22 United States Chumash Casino, Santa Ynez, California
Win 25–0 United States Sammy Sparkman TKO 4 (8) 2004-11-11 United States Hilton Towers Hotel, Washington D.C., Washington
Win 24–0 Mexico Javier Hector Valadez TKO 1 (10), 1:08 2004-09-23 United States HP Pavilion, San Jose, California
Win 23–0 Ecuador Luis Hernandez UD 10 2004-05-07 United States Foxwoods Resort Casino, Mashantucket, Connecticut
Win 22–0 Mexico Rodolfo Gomez TKO 4 (10), 2:43 2004-02-06 United States Desert Diamond Casino, Tucson, Arizona
Win 21–0 Mexico Arturo Rodriguez KO 1 (8) 2003-11-07 United States Desert Diamond Casino, Tucson, Arizona
Win 20–0 United States Benjie Marquez DQ 3 (6) 2003-08-26 United States Sandia Casino, Albuquerque, New Mexico Marquez was disqualified for hitting after the bell.
Win 19–0 United States Earl Jackson TKO 2 (6), 2:52 2003-01-03 United States Thunderbird Wild West Casino, Norman, Oklahoma
Win 18–0 Kenya Joshua Onyango UD 6 2002-10-18 United States HSBC Arena, Buffalo, New York
Win 17–0 Jamaica Gary Grant TKO 2 (6) 2002-07-27 United States Jarrell's Gym, Savannah, Georgia
Win 16–0 Ghana Laatekwei Hammond UD 6 2002-04-05 United States Alumni Arena, Buffalo, New York
Win 15–0 Puerto Rico Agustin Silva UD 4 2002-01-04 United States American Airlines Arena, Miami, Florida
Win 14–0 United States Mahan Washington TKO 3 (6), 1:44 2001-12-07 United States Fantasy Springs Resort Casino, Indio, California
Win 13–0 United States Willie McDonald TKO 1 2001-09-29 United States Savannah, Georgia
Win 12–0 United States Robert Muhammad TKO 5 2001-08-25 United States Savannah, Georgia
Win 11–0 Guyana Rhon Roberts TKO 4 2001-07-03 United States Six Flags Over Georgia, Atlanta, Georgia
Win 10–0 Cuba Miguel Aquila TKO 3 2001-03-31 United States Augusta, Georgia
Win 9–0 United States Henry Hawkins TKO 1 2001-01-27 United States Augusta, Georgia
Win 8–0 Cuba Miguel Aquila TKO 2 2000-12-14 United States Columbus, Georgia
Win 7–0 United States Rohan Nanton TKO 1 2000-12-09 United States Charlotte, North Carolina
Win 6–0 United States Eleser Ortega TKO 1 2000-10-28 United States Jarrell's Gym, Savannah, Georgia
Win 5–0 United States James Young TKO 3 2000-10-19 United States Columbus, Georgia
Win 4–0 United States Adrian McNeil KO 1 2000-09-30 United States Augusta, Georgia
Win 3–0 United States Richard Burns KO 1 (4) 2000-08-18 United States SE Livestock Pavilion, Ocala, Florida
Win 2–0 United States Matt Hill TKO 1 2000-08-01 United States Washington, D.C.
Win 1–0 United States Jeremy Mickelson PTS 4 2000-07-21 United States Greensboro Coliseum Complex, Greensboro, North Carolina Professional Debut

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Frauenheim, Norm (June 13, 2012). "Paul Williams' future uncertain". ESPN. Associated Press. Retrieved September 20, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b Satterfield, Lem (June 13, 2012). "Manager: Williams in good spirits, adds 'We like where we are'". The Ring. Retrieved September 20, 2012. 
  3. ^ Paul Williams Blows Away Carlos Quintana in One-Round URL accessed 9 June 2008.
  4. ^ "SecondsOut Boxing News - USA Boxing News - Williams Batters Phillips/ Arreola De-rails 'Freight Train'". 2008-11-30. Retrieved 2014-05-08. 
  5. ^ "Paul Williams-Winky Wright Agreement Reached For April - Boxing News". 2009-01-04. Retrieved 2014-05-08. 
  6. ^ Rafael, Dan. "Dan Rafael Blog - ESPN". Retrieved 2014-05-08. 
  7. ^ "Infection on finger of Kelly Pavlik's left hand forces title fight vs. Paul Williams to be called off - ESPN". 2009-10-21. Retrieved 2014-05-08. 
  8. ^ Sandoval, Luis (May 8, 2010). "Paul Williams Decisions Kermit Cintron, A Wild Ending". Retrieved May 9, 2010. 
  9. ^ "Cintron Furious: They Reverse It or I'm Done With Boxing - Boxing News". Retrieved 2014-05-08. 
  10. ^ "Martinez rises to pound-for-pound elite after KO of Williams". CNN. 2010-11-21. 
  11. ^ "Paul Williams vs. Erislandy Lara Decision Update: New Jersey Commission To Speak To Judges". Bad Left Hook. Retrieved 2014-05-08. 
  12. ^ "Paul Williams Tops Erislandy Lara In One Of The Worst Decisions You’ll Ever See". Queensberry Rules. 2011-07-10. Retrieved 2014-05-08. 
  13. ^ [1][dead link]
  14. ^ "Paul Williams-Erislandy Lara judges suspended by New Jersey State Athletic Control Board - ESPN". 2011-07-13. Retrieved 2014-05-08. 
  15. ^ Iole, Kevin (2011-07-13). "New Jersey suspends Williams-Lara judges - Yahoo Sports". Retrieved 2014-05-08. 
  16. ^ Rafael, Dan (2012-05-23). "Saul Alvarez to face Paul Williams". ESPN. Retrieved 2012-05-29. 
  17. ^ Frauenheim, Norm (September 14, 2012). "Paul Williams: "I think I can come back"". The Ring. Retrieved September 19, 2012. 
  18. ^ "Paul Williams - Boxer". 1981-07-27. Retrieved 2014-05-08. 

Video references[edit]

  1. ^ HBO Boxing: Paul Williams's Greatest Hits (HBO) (YouTube video: Fights against Walter Matthysse, Sharmba Mitchell, Santos Pakau, Antonio Margarito, Carlos Quintana (first meeting), Verno Phillips, Winky Wright, Sergio Gabriel Martínez (first meeting) and Kermit Cintrón). HBO Sports. June 30, 2011. Retrieved September 19, 2012. 
  2. ^ a b Showtime Boxing: Paul Williams Interview with Jim Gray - SHOWTIME (YouTube video). Showtime Sports. September 21, 2012. Retrieved September 24, 2012. 

External links[edit]

Awards and achievements
Preceded by
Antonio Margarito
WBO Welterweight Champion
July 14, 2007 – February 9, 2008
Succeeded by
Carlos Quintana
Preceded by
Carlos Quintana
WBO Welterweight Champion
June 7, 2008 - November 12, 2008
Title next held by
Miguel Cotto
New Title WBO Light Middleweight Champion
Interim Title

November 29, 2008 - November 7, 2009
Title next held by
Alfredo Angulo