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Julian Williams-Jarrett Hurd II signed for December 14th in Brooklyn

Williams upset Hurd by decision in May

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

Though overshadowed by Andy Ruiz’s heroics against Anthony Joshua, Julian Williams’ victory over Jarrett Hurd this past May remains one of the year’s biggest upsets. As expected, Hurd swiftly exercised his rematch clause, and the two have reportedly signed contracts to headline a PBC on FOX card on December 14th at Barclays Center.

A long string of knockout victories and a grueling split decision victory over Erislandy Lara earned Hurd (23-1, 16 KO) a pair of world titles and a spot at the top of most folks’ divisional rankings. His fight with Williams (27-1-1, 16 KO), who got stopped by Jermall Charlo in his first world title bid and was short on recent eye-catching performances, looked to be a formality en route to a future unification with Tony Harrison or Jermell Charlo; Hurd was more than a -700 favorite in places and all four of us knuckleheads picked him to knock Williams out within eight rounds.

That, well, didn’t happen. Williams floored the notoriously durable Hurd in the second round and, despite the latter’s tendency to snowball, managed to successfully slug it out with him until the final bell.

It was a sufficiently shocking and atypical performances on both sides to make a rematch even more intriguing. The seven-month gap between the first and second fight also means they’ll have time to make genuine adjustments and improvements, which is something immediate rematches generally lack.