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Julian Williams plans January 18th defense in Philadelphia

The fight will be his first defense as unified WBA/IBF champion

Julian Williams v Jarrett Hurd Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images

After Jarrett Hurd’s withdrawal from their planned December 14th rematch, WBA/IBF super welterweight champion Julian Williams is looking to return to action on January 18th in his native Philadelphia, joining rising Philly super bantamweight contender Stephen Fulton at Liacouras Center.

TBA currently has the assignment; PBC was “exploring” a unification fight between super champ Williams (27-1-1. 16 KO) and regular champ Erislandy Lara as of last month, though there’s no word on how that’s going. If it doesn’t wind up being Lara, it’s anyone’s guess who’s next, as “gold” champ Michel Soro and most of the WBA top five at 154 pounds are already occupied.

I suppose he’s earned a bit of a victory lap after stunning Hurd the way he did. Save for Andy Ruiz’s heroics against Anthony Joshua, it was one of the year’s most unexpectedly impressive performances, and completely restored the hype “J-Rock” lost after falling to Jermall Charlo in 2016.

25-year-old Fulton (17-0, 8 KO) looks about ready to take a step onto the world stage. The IBO champ, if you recognize that sort of thing, had a solid 2019 that included a decision over veteran Paulus Ambundus and a knockout of Isaac Avelar. He and interim WBA champ Brandon Figueroa raised the possibility of a match after the latter victory, but “Heartbreaker” is reportedly pursuing a fight with Julio Ceja.