Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. Are Both Running From This Fighter

Joe OneillCorrespondent IIMay 7, 2010

The man both Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather are hesitant to face in a boxing ring is fighting on HBO tomorrow night.

I'll give you some hints. 

He's tall, dark, lanky, a southpaw, and has a cool goatee.

No, not Will Smith (although, from what I've gathered, that's a pretty good guess from most Mayweather fans).

It would be one Paul "The Punisher" Williams.

The man Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao have been ducking for years and years.

Williams is a monster. At 6'1", he's got reach and length and his stamina could make a Kenyan marothoner jealous.

His power is good, but not outrageous.

His record 38-1 (27 KOs) speaks for itself. The one blemish, a unanimous decision loss to Carlos Quintana in February of 2008, was quickly avenged with a first round knockout of Quintana.

He's beaten Antonio Margarito (even while Margarito was still cheating with those casts on his hands), Winky Wright, and Sergio Martinez.

His win against Martinez cemented his stature as one of boxing's pound for pound best fighters.

Martinez, who subsequently beat Kelly Pavlik, is a very, very good fighter; athletic and slick and very active. He's undoubtedly the second best middleweight in the game today.

Williams will fight Kermit Cintron tomorrow night on HBO. Cintron is 32-2 with 28 KOs. He's a powerful puncher and a dangerous fighter.

A natural light middleweight, Williams is on record as saying he'll drop down to 147 lbs to face Mayweather or Pacquiao.

Both Pacquiao and Mayweather camps are suspiciously quiet when the subject of Paul Williams comes up.

The fight tomorrow night should be an excellent one. If you haven't seen Paul Williams fight, then you're in for something special.

He's about as active as they come, flurrying his opponents with a constant barrage of jabs and lefts from various angles. He never tires and will throw just as many punches in the 12th round as the first.

He can appear awkward at times, because of his length, but don't let that fool you. His balance, ring generalship, and defense are excellent.

There's no doubt the fight will be more entertaining than any of Floyd Mayweather's or Manny Pacquiao's recent fights. If you like watching one-sided brawls, this fight won't be for you.

I happen to think both Pacquiao and Mayweather would beat Paul Williams.

Williams is very, very good, but just a smidgen below the ability of Manny and Floyd.

The problem is, he's a dangerous guy without too many weaknesses. He can take a shot, as witnessed by his fight with Sergio Martinez, and he just doesn't tire.

He's also never lost an all-out war. He's a young, fresh fighter with legs and confidence.

He doesn't meet the usual criteria of an opponent for Manny or Floyd.

That Manny gets fighters after they've lost very tough bouts (Cotto, Clottey, and Hatton), and Floyd gets in the ring with either very old (Mosley, De La Hoya, and Marquez) or much smaller fighters (Hatton and Marquez).

I'm impressed that Williams would take the Cintron after his war with Martinez. Cintron is most certainly a dangerous fighter and capable of beating Williams.

It just goes to show that Williams has the heart of a champion and will get in the ring with the best.

If you haven't watched Paul Williams fight, definitely tune into HBO on Saturday night. I'd like to hear some analysis from objective fight fans (not Floyd and Manny minions), on William's chances against either fighter.