Deron Williams is coming after someone other than his opponent ahead of his debut boxing match. According to ESPN’s Eric Woodyard, he claims to be better prepared for his first professional match than fellow former NBA player Nate Robinson.
“I watched it. I’m not Nate Robinson. I think I have a little more experience than Nate. I’ve been training stand-up and boxing for 8-10 years,” Deron Williams said. “I’ve sparred against high-level UFC guys that are bigger than me, that are my size and that are smaller than me, so, I think I’m a little more prepared than Nate was for that fight. And I don’t think anybody really respected Jake Paul at the time as a fighter, but obviously things are changing.”
Nate Robinson, former point guard for countless teams in the NBA, made his official boxing debut last November. His match and arguably embarrassing loss against Jake Paul is well known in the modern boxing world. Paul was also making his boxing debut that night, and he surprised many people who didn’t take his skills seriously.
Fast forward to November of 2021, and we are just a month away from Deron Williams’ debut match against former NFL running back Frank Gore. This match precedes the main card between Robinson’s first opponent Jake Paul and Tommy Fury.
While there are similarities to this match with the presence of Paul and their NBA backgrounds, Williams has much higher expectations from himself than the performance of Robinson.
According to the ESPN article, Williams’ preparation also comes from owning Fortis MMA gym in Dallas, as well as wrestling growing up and “training for an MMA exhibition bout” prior to the pandemic. Williams and Gore take the ring for the first time on December 18.