Holyfield vs Williams
Evander Holyfield (43-10-2, 21 KOs) is set to defend his World Boxing Federation heavyweight title against Sherman “The Tank” Williams (34-11-2, 19 KOs) in a 12-round championship fight January 22, headlining the “Redemption In America: The Journey Begins Now” Pay-Per-View Event
Holyfield has rebounded from back-to-back losses against Sultan Ibragimov for the WBO title and giant Russian Nikolay Valuev for the WBA crown (in a fight most observers thought he won) with a win over veteran Frans Botha.
That win over the South African gave the former undisputed champion the spurious WBF belt, but Evander still has his sights set on unifying the heavyweight divisions whose spoils are currently split between the Klitschko brothers and David Haye.
In the opposite corner is the sawn-off American heavyweight, whose record boasts a smattering of recognisable names, but no marquee wins. Perhaps the most ominous result on his roster is a points loss to the robotic Tye Fields, whose insanely protected run came to an end at the fists of the useful Monte Barrett in one round back in 2008.
Williams’ nine fight winning streak was spoilt last time out by Hamburg-based Syrian Manuel Char. Dropping a majority points decision in Germany to the undefeated ‘Diamond Boy’, the Tank now has eyes set on upsetting the old warhorse at the Greenbrier resort in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia.
Holyfield may not be the force he used to be – his once formidable offence now coming only in spurts, but the 48-year-old great can still fight effectively, as demonstrated in his losing performance against Valuev and should be able to grind down the Tank for a stoppage sometime before the midway point. Williams has fought a live opponent since losing to Ruslan Chagaev back in 2005.
Expect Holyfield to emerge victorious with his dreams of unification intact.
The show will open with a performance of the Ray Charles classic “America,” performed by Tony Award nominee Brandon Victor Dixon from the upcoming Broadway play, “Unchain My Heart,” chronicling the life of Ray Charles. World-renowned saxophone player Clarence Clemons also headlines along with aerialists and dancers.
“Redemption In American,” presented by ARK Promotions in association with The Greenbrier, will be distributed in North American by Integrated Sports Media for live viewing at 9 PM/ET 6 PM/PT on both cable and satellite pay per view via iN Demand, DIRECTV, Avail-TVN and DISH Network in the United States, as well as Viewer’s Choice and Shaw PPV in Canada.