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“Martinez said he’s going to knock me out, I love that.”


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Paul Williams: “Martinez said he’s going to knock me out, I love that.”


Jerry Glick reporting: Sometimes in boxing things manage to come together in unexpected ways. Some cards are long in planning and work out just the way they were intended to and other shows almost seem to make themselves. Originally Paul Williams was to meet middleweight boss Kelly Pavlik, but Pavlik injured his hand so his promoter Dan Goosen had to look around for another opponent. He may have found some lightning in a bottle.


So on Saturday, December 5th, promoters Dan Goosen and Lou DiBella are going to be facing each other nose to nose on HBO at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. Well sort of, Goosen’s schnozz will be represented by his fighter, “The Most Feared Fighter in the World,” Paul “The Punisher” Williams, 37-1 (27 KOs) and instead of DiBella’s beak, it will be his fighter’s nose on the line, WBC Junior-Middleweight Champion Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez, 44-1-2 (24 KOs), will add a few extra pounds and fight Williams at middleweight. The Argentine born, Madrid resident, at 5’11” will be almost eye to eye with 6’1” “Tall Paul”.


The media gathered at The Palm West Restaurant in Manhattan for a press conference Wednesday to further raise the fight public’s awareness that this very deep card is taking place.


Also on the show will be former heavyweight title challenger Chris Arreola, 27-1 (24 KOs) who will face hungry, Brian Minto, 34-2 (21 KOs) in a heavyweight encounter.


Arreola took a beating in a brave stand against Vitali Klitschko last time out on September 26th so who expected to see him back in a scant two plus months?


He took some flack at the end of the title fight and addressed it, and more, with this reporter.


“About me crying like a little bitch?” He asked. “It is what it is, man. You come so close to something you’ve dreamed your whole life and then fall short; not just fall short, to fall on my face the way I did, it was painful.” (Note- Anyone who ridicules a boxer for showing emotion needs to get in the ring!)


Why is he back so soon?


“I like it,” he said. “I love fighting. That’s what I’m in the business for, to fight.”


The relaxed contender told this reporter that he had a great training camp.


“Training was great,” said Arreola. “I had great sparring partners in Javier Mora and Travis Kauffman.”


“Travis Kauffman I believe is one of the best up and coming young heavyweights. He’s fast and he knows how to move in the ring,” added the gracious Arreola.


His opponent, Brian Minto, knows that this will be a great opportunity for him. A win will move him into the top circle of challengers for any one of the belts.


“It’s the biggest fight of my career, by far,” said Minto. “He’s a tough guy. It’s a great opportunity for me even though he’s coming off a loss. He fought a hell of a fight. He’s a tough kid coming off this loss. This speaks volumes for me.”


Often losing for the first time has an effect on a fighter. Especially one so emotional as is Arreola. But will it matter?


“It could be,” said Minto. “Mentally, the letdown after training for the heavyweight championship of the world. So there could be a big letdown mentally, but you know, he’s a tough kid and only time will tell on Saturday to see how he comes back mentally from that.”


Minto will be ready.


“We know what he does,” added the WBO #5 and the WBA #14 ranked contender. “He comes straight forward; tries to get you out of there. He’s real aggressive, but he gives a lot of opportunities to fighters. I think it’s going to be a fireworks fight for as long as it lasts.”


Minto is entering this fight with no promises of a title shot, but he expects that with a win things will happen.


Goosen told this reporter that the 6’1’ Williams can still fight at welterweight.


“We’ll fight welterweights but they’re not going to fight him,” said the feisty Goosen. “I have no problem with that. What I do have a problem with is when they say that they are the best welterweight in the world and won’t fight him. Now if you’re not going to fight him don’t proclaim that you are the best. Just say ‘Hey I’m the best after Paul Williams.’ “


As tall as he is, welterweights are attractive to “The Punisher.”


“If they give me someone like Pacquiao, Mayweather, Cotto, any of them big name guys (I’ll fight them),” said Williams.


I mentioned that the Pacman is so much smaller than him, and Williams gave this reporter the definitive answer, “Hey if I make the weight it should be good,” said Tall Paul. “He was willing to fight De La Hoya and all them guys.”


The fact is if you are the champ at a given weight you have to fight anyone who makes that weight. The question is, can Pacquiao continue to shock the world against someone so much bigger than he? It is all up to Williams electing to weigh in at 147. Time will, as it always does, tell.


His current opponent, Martinez has predicted a knockout win.


“He said he’s going to knock me out,” added Williams. “I love that.”


To complete the patchwork nature of this show heavyweights Chazz Witherspoon 26-1 (18 KOs), against Tony Thompson, 32-2 (20 KOs) was just added on, and Williams conqueror, Carlos Quintana, 26-2 (20 KOs) battles tough Jesse Feliciano, 15-7-3 (9 KOs), in a welterweight bout, just to name a few of the fights on this well stocked show.





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