Thoughts on Tapia and Williams

By Tom Donelson, BASN boxing writer
Updated: June 8, 2012
IOWA CITY, IOWA (BASN)—Over the past week, there were three big events of note. The first was the passing of Johnny Tapia, a boxing legend. In the 1990’s, he made the lighter weight interesting with his life story, many tattoo and exciting style of fighting. He began his career as a Super Flyweight and fought his last fight as a light weight.
In the ring, Tapia showed mastery of the sweet science but he still had enough power in his punches to make a statement. He had 30 knockouts in 59 victories but what set him apart from others was his boxing skills. Many New Mexican sports fans remember his fight with Danny Romero, another New Mexico fighter when both were among the elites of their division. Tapia won the decision while capturing Romero Super flyweight belt while keeping his. More importantly, he won the battle of New Mexico. Tapia had his share of demons outside the ring including drug abuse and in the end, Tapia died too young with much left to give to the sport outside the ring. RIP, Tapia.
Paul Williams was on his way to fight one more big battle this September against the Mexican youngster Saul “Canelo” Alvarez but that fight will never happen. Williams may be paralyzed as result of a motorcycle accident and now, the real miracle will be if he is able to walk again. Williams had a unique, go for broke style in which his offense was his defense. Despite his lanky 6’1″ frame, Williams did not always fight tall but simply threw volume of punches in an effort to overwhelm and then stop his opponent.
His first big victory was against Antonio Margarito , and his next big moment was revenging a twelve decision lost to Carlos Quintana with a spectacular one round knockout. He followed that up with an easy decision over the veteran Winky Wright.
Williams managed to win a close majority decision over Sergio Martinez but Martinez nailed Williams in the rematch when he stopped Williams in the second round. From that point, he had a close controversial wins over Erislandy Lara before defeating Nobuhiro Ishida in his last bout. Williams had a good career, was a champion, beat some excellent fighters and now he fights for his ability to do what many of us take for granted, simply walk a few steps.
Last week, Carl Froch showed that he may just be the second best Super Middleweight in the world as he stopped and dominated Lucian Bute. Bute came into the fight as the overwhelming favorite in a two fight home and home contract with the first fight being in Nottingham England; Froch home town.
Bute cleaned out the non-Super Six portion of the Super Middleweight and considering that when the Super 6 tournament began, the Super Middleweight was the deepest division with twelve or thirteen fighter capable of being the man of the division. When the smoke cleared after the tournament was over, Andre Ward was the king of the Super Six and Bute was the undefeated last obstacle in Ward’s way. Except that Froch showed the world that maybe the best Super Middleweights already fought in the Super Six and he pounded Bute from the opening bell till Froch stopped him in the fifth. The difference between Bute and Ward could be seen since Ward demonstrated that he could fight on the inside and outside. Froch admitted as much that Ward was the better fighter between the two but Bute had Ward hand speed but he lacked Ward flexibility as fighter. As for Ward, he is now relieved of fighting Bute and now he may have Chad Dawson in his sight for Dawson’s light heavyweight belt.