Paul Williams vs Nobuhiro Ishida Preview

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On Saturday, February 18, the main event on Showtime Championship Boxing features Paul Williams (40-2, 27 KO) taking on Nobuhiro Ishida (24-6-2, 9 KO) in a scheduled 12 round light middleweight bout. The fight will be broadcast live from the American Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texas.

Paul 'The Punisher' Williams, a 30 year old southpaw from Aiken, South Carolina, who has twice held the World Boxing Organization (WBO) Welterweight belt and the interim Super Welterweight belt, has fought just three times in the last two years and says he is looking forward to fighting more frequently and dominating the 154 lb division.

Williams recently told the press, "I'm excited to be given this opportunity and to be able to prove myself again. I love that because it's just more motivation and that come Feb 18 I'm going to put on a helluva show for my fans and the people who aren't my fans."

Over the past three years, Paul Williams has shown very little in the way of dominance in any of his fights. In April 2009, he won a unanimous decision over Winky Wright in a fairly impressive fashion. That win was as close to looking impressive as he's come since.

Williams vs Lara Controversy
In his last fight on July 9th, Williams was seemingly dominated over 12 rounds by Erislandy Lara. According to Compubox PunchStats, Lara landed Lara landed 224 out of 530 punches thrown (42% connect rate) while Williams landed 200 out of 1,047 punches thrown (19% connect rate). Lara also outlanded Williams in powershots, 178-161.

'The Punisher' was awarded a highly controversial majority decision in the fight. Judge Donald Givens and Hilton Whitaker III scored it 116-115 and 115-114, respectively, in favor of Paul Williams while Judge Al Bennett scored the bout 114-114. Most at ringside strongly disagreed with the decision. And in an unprecedented but forceful disciplinary act, the New Jersey Boxing Commission suspended all three judges indefinitely as a result of the controversy.

When asked what he thought of the judges' suspension, Paul Williams said, "I thought it was bull crap. It's not like the judges were off by more than one point. It was one point. Why would they want to make a big deal about that? I thought that was bull crap."

Paul Williams was also asked about a re-match. "I have no reason to fight (Lara) again. He didn't get any fame or glory for winning that fight. All he got was me having a bad night. That's about it. If he had gone out and gotten a title then I would definitely like to fight him again."


Pictured: Paul Williams shadowboxes in February 2012 in preparation for his bout with Ishida
Photo Courtesy of Adrian Hernandez,

Nobuhiro Ishida
Southpaw Paul Williams will be facing a dangerous opponent this weekend. In his last fight, Nobuhiro Ishida stopped Mexican southpaw Edson Espinoza who was making his pro debut. But even more impressive was his first round knockout of the current WBC Continental Americas light middleweight title holder James Kirkland last April. Nobuhiro Ishida dropped Kirkland three times in the first round in route to scoring a knockout at 1:52 of round one. It was Kirkland's first loss as pro.

And like James Kirkland, Paul Williams is a southpaw. Will it matter Saturday night?

Nobuhiro Ishida said he didn't expect to score a knockout over Kirkland; "You never really expect that" he said. "I'm not sure about a knockout against Paul Williams, but I think I will get the win. I'm going to make it a very long night for Paul Williams."

Vice President and Matchmaker for Golden Boy Promotions Eric Gomez said when Ishida beat Kirkland nobody wanted to fight him. It seems everybody had an excuse why they wouldn't fight Ishida but Williams stepped up. Gomez said, "I want to thank Paul Williams for coming forward and taking this fight. He's one of the few fighters who will fight anybody. Paul Williams does what he preaches and he is the only guy who would take this fight. We even approached Kirkland about a possible rematch and he's our guy. Paul Williams stepped up and said, 'I want to fight Ishida. I don't care who he is or who he has beaten."

Gomez added, "Ishida has never been knocked down before. This is going to be a great fight."


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