Paul Williams and the 10 Biggest Fights of His Career (With Video)
Now that Manny Pacquiao’s week has passed, we move onto a fight that may end up being the fight of the year. Paul Williams will fight Sergio Martinez in a rematch of their sizzling bout from last December.
The tide has changed a lot in the past year and there will be more at stake this time around. Martinez is coming off a career defining win against Kelly Pavlik, where he captured the lineal middleweight title.
Williams is coming off a bizarre technical decision win over Kermit Cintron. He got the win after Cintron fell out of the ring and it was decided he couldn’t continue.
Martinez lost the first fight by the slimmest of margins but has to be considered the favorite coming into this fight. If Williams wins this fight, it would be the biggest win of his career.
We are going to take a walk down memory lane and look at the 10 biggest wins of Williams’ career. Some choices are fights everyone saw and some our fights that you may want to look up.
No. 10: Sergio Rios (KO 2)
Not the most important Sergio that Williams has ever fought, but still a big fight in his career.
Rios isn’t a great fighter and never really was. He was 18-2 coming into the fight and was coming off a knockout loss to the late Vernon Forrest.
This fight is important in the career of Williams, because it was his major television debut on ESPN and was for the WBC USNBC welterweight title.
He wanted to impress the national television audience, and he did just that by dominating Rios on way to a knockout in round two.
No. 9: Terrance Cauthen (UD 10)
Another fighter that wasn’t great, but it was still an important fight for Williams. Cauthen was the first step up for Williams, and it was going to prove if he had the goods or not.
Cauthen won the bronze medal at the 1996 Olympic games at the light heavyweight limit. Cauthen has been a career underachiever but is a solid gatekeeper and a tough fighter.
Williams beat him by unanimous decision and went 10 rounds for only the second time in his career.
No. 8: Walter Dario Matthysse (TKO 10)
The Matthysse fight was the first time that Williams was featured on HBO and was for the vacant WBO NABO welterweight title. Matthysse was an undefeated fighter as well and appeared to have a big punch.
He had 24 knockouts in his 25 wins coming into the fight. He proved to be more bark than bite and Williams took him apart easily. He finally caught Matthysse in the corner in round 10 and landed eight unanswered punches.
It was his first chance to fight on HBO, and he came through in impressive fashion. This win was more than just a win or loss; it was a chance to show HBO that he was an exciting fighter.
He did just that and has been fighting on HBO ever since.
No. 7: Andy Kolle (KO 1)
Kolle is far from a world beater, but he is something that Williams never faced up until this point, a middleweight.
Williams and his team were claiming that they could fight anywhere from welterweight to middleweight, and not only compete but be the best at all three weights.
He also said that his power would carry no matter where he was at, and to say people were a little skeptical would be an understatement to say the least.
Kolle was a durable middleweight whose only loss was to Andre Ward when he retired after six rounds. Williams made sure he didn’t last longer than the first round and landed a perfect punch to end matters.
It proved that Williams could be a player in the middleweight division and that he could knock out a true middleweight fighter.
No. 6: Sharmba Mitchell (TKO 4)
Mitchell was the first former champion that Williams shared the ring with and had shared the ring with some of the best fighters of his era.
He had losses to Floyd Mayweather Jr., Kostya Tszyu (2x), Stevie Johhnston and Leavander Johnson. He had also held the WBA lightweight title for two years and the interim IBF light welterweight title.
He was old and small for the weight, but this was another chance for Williams to impress on HBO and he did it against a guy that people knew.
He never let him in the fight and knocked him down three times en route to a fourth round TKO.
No. 5: Verno Phillips (TKO 8)
After Williams destroyed Kolle, he couldn’t get a good offer at middleweight so he moved down to light middleweight and fought Verno Phillips for the interim WBO title.
Phillips was a former three-time light middleweight title holder and one of the toughest fighters in the game. Despite fighting the best for his whole career he was only knocked out once in his fifth pro fight.
He was getting older but was coming off a split decision win over Cory Spinks in Spinks’ hometown of St. Louis.
Williams was determined to become the second fighter and first world class fighter to stop Phillips on national television.
That is what he did when the fight was stopped by the doctor after round eight. With this win he became a two division champion and won a fight in a third weight class.
No. 4: Winky Wright (UD 12)
This signifies the first time that Williams shared the ring with a potential Hall of Fame fighter. Wright had beaten the likes of Shan Mosley (two times), Felix Trinidad and Ike Quartey.
You can also argue that he has been robbed of a few fights in his career. He was always one of the best defensive fighters in the game and figured to be a hard nut to crack for Williams.
That wasn’t the case at all as Williams pounded out one of the most lopsided unanimous decisions you’ll ever see. He beat Wright like no one before ever had and won by scores of 120-108 and 119-109 (two times).
If people still weren’t sure how good Williams was, this answered any doubts.
No. 3: Carlos Quintana 2 (KO 1)
In his first title defense, he fought sturdy but unspectacular Puerto Rican Carlos Quintana. Quintana beat him by a unanimous decision over 12 rounds, and took Williams’ undefeated record and his title.
The rematch took place almost two months to the day of their first fight, and no judges were needed this time around. Williams looked to avenge his only career defeat in dominant fashion and did just that.
Williams jumped all over him after landing a solid left hand and got the fight stopped at 2:15 of the very first round. People were questioning his heart after the loss and he silenced them with this win.
No. 2: Antonio Margarito (UD 12)
Usually winning your first world title is the most important fight of your career but not in this case. Williams went into this fight with an undefeated record and a growing reputation in the boxing community.
It was an interesting style matchup because they were both volume punchers that could hit hard. The difference was Margarito is a pure pressure fighter with little boxing skills.
Williams is a volume puncher but he could sit on the outside and box if needed. Williams got off to a fast start and swept the early rounds before fading down the stretch.
He barley pulled out a unanimous decision wins by scores of 115-113 (2x) and 116-112. The win netted him the WBO welterweight title which was his first major title.
This was also the first time that he went the full 12 rounds.
No. 1: Sergio Martinez (UD 12)
This was a fight that wasn’t even supposed to happen. Williams was slated to fight against Kelly Pavlik for the world middleweight championship.
Pavlik pulled out with an injury and Martinez was the replacement fighter. The fight got off to a sizzling start when Williams put Martinez down only to find himself on the canvas later in the round.
Martinez controlled rounds 2-3, but Williams stormed back to control rounds 4-7. The tide turned again when Martinez controlled rounds 8-11.
The fighters were exhausted in round 12 but closed the show in style. Williams barely got the win and both fighters got the recognition they deserved.
If Williams can duplicate this win on Saturday, it will be the biggest win of his career and will make him a three division champion.