Williams survives Lara

By Francis Walker, BASN Boxing writer
Updated: July 10, 2011

Paul Williams

Paul Williams

NEW YORK, NYFormer WBO welterweight and junior middleweight champion Paul Williams returned to the same Adrian Phillips Ballroom in Boardwalk Hall when in December 2009, he posted the biggest victory of his career. A 12-round decision against Sergio Martinez in what was a wild slugfest that could have gone either way.

Boardwalk Hall is also the site Williams suffered his most devastating defeat – a shocking second round knockout loss to Martinez in a November 2010 rematch.

Looking to erase the still-fresh distaste from between his lips, Williams (39-2, 27 KOs) returned to the Adrian Phillips Ballroom to challenge Erislandy Lara (15-1, 10 KOs) to a 12-round, 154-pound bout on Saturday. HBO televised.

After 12 rounds, the official judges’ awarded Williams with a majority decision: 116-114, 115-114, and 114-114 (even). Many ringside observers, including James Bashir, second-assistant to world heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko, believe that Williams didn’t deserve the victory.

“No way did Paul Williams deserve to win that fight,” Bashir said. “Lara landed the cleaner, more accurate shots.”

Williams never felt comfortable through the fight. He was primarily off-balanced when throwing his punches. He dropped his hands coming in which allowed Lara to land his left-hand frequently. Lara, not recognized as a big puncher, was so effective that he busted up Williams’ face with blood and lumps. Lara had Williams on rubbery legs and made him miss badly.

According to CompuBox numbers, Williams threw 1047 punches, but landed only 200 (19%). Lara threw only 530 punches, but landed 24 more (224) for a greater percentage (42%). Lara landed more power punches (178-161) and landed more jabs than Williams (46-39).

“It was a good fight,” Lara said afterwards. “I don’t know what the judges saw. The Martinez fight was a blueprint for this fight, coming with the overhand left. That’s what we practiced in the gym. I would like to have a rematch.”

Ramos wins super-bantam crown

Undefeated 122-pound prospect Rico Ramos can now be called champion. Fighting as the televised co-featured attraction to Williams vs. Lara on HBO, Ramos (20-0, 11 KOs) scored a one-punch, knockout of defending WBA super bantamweight champion, Akifumi Shimoda (23-3-1, 10 KOs) in round seven.

Ramos, with a cut above his right eye, was losing to Shimoda badly. The judges had Shimoda winning 60-54 and 59-55 (twice) before a sharp left-hook by Ramos floored him on the back of his head.

“I was throwing my right hand a lot,” Ramos said. “I should have went to the body more often. His right was down and I brought my left hand over. ”

Shimoda was so dominant that when Ramos dropped him, it was a surprise to everyone. Some people didn’t even realize the punch landed as hard as Shimoda’s back touched the canvas. It happened so quickly.

The time of the stoppage was 2:46 seconds.

Arreola decisions Ahunanya

Former heavyweight title challenger, Chris Arreola (33-2, 28 KOs) continued his comeback against Friday Ahunanya (24-8-3, 13 KOs) in a non-televised, 10-round attraction. Arreola looked in tremendous shape at 236 lbs. His stomach was trimmed well and his calves had muscular definition.

Too bad Arreola didn’t fight as if he was the best shape of his life, as he looked somewhat flat during his unanimous decision win. All three judges scored the bout 100-90 and 99-91 (twice) for the Riverside, CA native.

When Arreola was asked how he would rate his performance, he was very critical.

“D – it was horrible,” Arreola said immediately following the fight. “It’s a fight that shouldn’t have gone 8 rounds. I couldn’t pull the trigger. I got hit with stupid shots.”

One punch in particularly Arreola was hit with was a left hook that momentarily wobbled him in the third round. Ahunanya, to his discredit, didn’t apply pressure and kept retreating to the ropes to Arreola to pummel him. Arreola had Ahunanya hurt in the later rounds to two occasions, but simply couldn’t “pull the trigger.”

Arreola vs. Klitschko?

When asked about the possibility to fighting Wladimir Klitschko for the unified IBF/WBA and WBO heavyweight championships, Arreola said: “I’ve heard those rumors. But based on my performance today, I don’t deserve it. This guy shouldn’t have lasted more than 7-8 round with me.”

Klitschko is coming fresh of his unanimous decision victory over David Haye in front of 55,000 at ImTech Arena in Germany last week to capture the WBA title. Arreola does have history with the Klitschkos as he lost to Wladimir’s older brother, Vitali, the WBC heavyweight champion, in 2009.

Broadway Boxing returns to The Aviator

Professional boxing returns to the Aviator Sports & Events Center at Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn, NY on Saturday, July 30.

Making his eighth appearance on Lou DiBella’s Broadway Boxing series, junior welterweight Gabriel Bracero (16-0, 2 KOs) will challenge Danie “The White Lion: Van Staden (8-6, 2 KOs). Bracero, in last appearance on June 11, during the Puerto Rican Day weekend, knocked out Guillermo Valdes in just 40 seconds. heritage during Puerto Rican Day Parade weekend. cumbed to the lure of the streets and spent time in prison on a weapons charge. Refocused upon his release, Bracero resumed his career in 2009 and has won 11 in a row. Until recently, Bracero was not known to have much power, but his style is that of a volume puncher who applies relentless pressure in wearing opponents down.

In addition, local New York favorites: flyweight Keisher McLeod-Wells (4-1, 1 KO) light-heavyweights Seanie Monaghan (7-0, 4 KOs), Travis Peterkin (2-0, 2 KOs), middleweight Jonathan Cepeda (10-0, 9 KOs), and heavyweight Jay Rodriguez will be on the show. Cruiserweight Jay Rodriguez will be making his professional debut.