Paul Williams has been called out by Joshua Clottey. Will the self-proclaimed most feared man in boxing take the fight? (via www4.pictures.gi.zimbio.com)
- Joshua Clottey isn't unrealistic. He knows that a rematch with Miguel Cotto is probably out of the question right now, so instead he's targeting Paul "The Punisher" Williams. Williams hasn't fought at 147 pounds since last summer, when he avenged his lone defeat against Carlos Quintana, but the lanky divison-hopper says he can still make the weight. Clottey goes so far as to call him "a weak welterweight," and says explicitly that that's the guy he wants to fight. It'd be a fine Boxing After Dark or even World Championship Boxing main event, the latter easier done if paired with a second good fight. You can market it as two of boxing's most avoided men colliding. Williams says he's the most feared man in boxing. Let's see him put his money where his mouth is, because I don't think anything bigger is on the horizon. Last news on Williams was he was looking into fighting Sergiy Dzinziruk, a hell of a fighter, and that's a good fight, but Williams-Clottey is an easier sell to the American networks.
- The Andriy Kotelnik-Amir Khan 140-pound title bout has been pushed back to July 18, and I guess with nothing on American TV that night now, you could market that as a $24.95 PPV in the afternoon. I think I'd order it.
- Peter Manfredo Jr. has signed a deal with TKO Boxing of Las Vegas. The quote from the firm talks about Manfredo working his way up the middleweight rankings. BoxRec.com also continues to list Manfredo as a middleweight despite the fact that he hasn't fought at 160 since 2005, which is a lot of his career. He went to super middleweight as soon as the first season of "The Contender" was done. He's fought a lot of legit super middleweights. What is this deal with him being a middleweight?
- In case you missed it (and I don't think we ever discussed it on the front page, so let's do that now), WBA middleweight titlist Felix Sturm returns on July 11 with a legitimate opponent, stablemate Khoren Gevor. The fact that both fight under Universum's banner is probably the only reason it's happening, so don't go too crazy giving Sturm a break for taking a live opponent that can fight. Gevor last fought in November when he beat Amin Asikainen. He is 30-3 with 16 knockouts, with two losses to Lukas Konecny and one to Arthur Abraham. It's a solid title fight. Sturm discusses the fight here. He takes issue with anyone judging him harshly for accepting a fight with total non-contender Koji Sato and says he'd take a fight with Abraham or Pavlik. I maintain my doubts.
- The Junior Witter-Devon Alexander fight for the vacant WBC junior welterweight title has been scheduled for August 1. For now at least.
- Tomasz Adamek wants to fight Bernard Hopkins or -- wait for it -- Roy Jones Jr. after he's done with Bobby Gunn. I like Adamek and respect the Hopkins call-out because B-Hop talked about that fight, but Jones? Why pick the bones? Bobby Gunn is just about as legit an opponent at this point.