Deron Williams vs. Frank Gore: Fight Odds, Date, Live Stream and TV Schedule

Nate Loop@Nate_LoopFeatured ColumnistDecember 16, 2021

Former San Francisco 49ers running back Frank Gore watches from the sideline before an NFL football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Sunday, Nov. 21, 2021, in Jacksonville, Fla. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)
Phelan M. Ebenhack/Associated Press

Former NBA point guard Deron Williams and ex-NFL running back Frank Gore are set to face off in a heavyweight boxing match on the undercard of the Jake Paul-Tyron Woodley rematch Saturday night in Tampa, Florida.

Saturday's bout, scheduled for four rounds with a weight limit of 215 pounds, will mark the pro debuts for both combatants. Williams, 37, is a three-time NBA All-Star who spent the majority of his career with the Utah Jazz and the New Jersey/Brooklyn Nets. He last played in the NBA in 2016, splitting time between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Dallas Mavericks.

Gore, is a five-time Pro Bowl selection and the NFL's third all-time leading rusher with 16,000 yards. He was revered for his longevity at one of football's most physically demanding positions, and he last played for the New York Jets in 2020.

Both Williams and Gore have accomplished plenty in their chosen sports, and they will now look to prove themselves in a new context.


Williams vs. Gore Fight Info

When: Saturday, Dec. 18 at 9 p.m. ET (main card)

Where: Amalie Arena in Tampa, Florida

Live stream/TV: Showtime pay-per-view ($59.95)

Odds: Williams -170 (bet $170 to win $100), Gore +140 (bet $100 to win $140)

Odds via DraftKings


It's natural to wonder how these two ended up as opponents in the ring. Unlike some of the other celebrity or crossover boxing matches that have popped up in the past couple of years, there's no feud here, no score to be settled. In this case, both men say they are fighting because they have long appreciated and been interested in combat sports.

According to the Washington Post's Ben Golliver, Williams has owned a mixed martial arts gym in Dallas since 2015, and he was also a wrestler before focusing his attention on basketball. He initially wanted to try his hand at MMA, but the pandemic derailed those plans. The opportunity for a boxing match came up, and the retired NBA playmaker decided he was ready to test himself. 

"Fighting is the hardest thing you can do, mentally and physically," Williams said, per Golliver. "It's a grind. It takes a lot out of you. There's a certain level of fear of getting embarrassed and waking up not knowing what the hell just happened. At the same time, you're still making that walk. You're still doing something that a lot of people don't have the [guts] to do."

Karisa Maxwell @KarisaMaxwell

Former NBA All-Star @DeronWilliams working out ahead of his Saturday boxing debut vs. @frankgore #PaulWoodley2 https://t.co/CyL9vE7oiw

While Williams has more of a background in wrestling and MMA, Gore has been training as a boxer for several years. He started incorporating the sweet science into his offseason workouts as early as 2011, per SFGate.com's Scott Ostler. The regimen clearly did him some good, as Gore was able to play 16 years in the NFL, an almost unheard of number for a running back. He plans to carry the same toughness and tenacity he showed on the gridiron to the boxing ring.

"I'm taking this seriously. I want to look good, and of course, I want to win. When the fight is over on Saturday night, I want people to say, 'Man, whatever you put your mind into, you can do it.' This is no joke; a lot of people would be scared to get in the ring and go one-on-one with another guy," said Gore, per Bad Left Hook's Wil Esco.

Hans Themistode @themistode

Bruh Deron Williams might be in some trouble against Frank Gore 😳 #PaulWoodley2 https://t.co/pr7UsFeRq9

While Gore might seem like a more sensible pick on Saturday night because of his football background, Williams is actually a slight favorite. That's likely thanks to his physical advantages, as Golliver noted he is six inches taller than Gore and has a nine-inch reach advantage.

If Gore is going to get the win in this four-rounder, he's going to have find a way to get past Williams' jab and hit the target at close range.


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