These Former New York Athletes Will Punch Each Other’s Lights Out in December
The fight that no one expected, and no one really asked for, is on its way in just over one month.
Two former New York athletes will be boxing, and punching each other's lights out, on December 18th in Florida as part the Jake Paul-Tommy Fury undercard.
In One Corner...Deron Williams
Williams is a veteran of over 800 career NBA games, having last played in the league in 2017. At his peak in 2011 with Utah, and 2012 with the (at the time) New Jersey Nets, Williams averaged over 20 points per game as a starter in the NBA.
Williams was with the Nets franchise when it relocated to Brooklyn, and averaged nearly 19 points per game while sharing a back court with Paul Pierce. By 2015, however, his numbers had dwindled significantly, and he was out of the league soon after.
As was described by the ESPN article on the fight, Williams is a well-known proponent of combat sports, and has a share of ownership in an MMA gym down in Dallas.
In The Other Corner...Frank Gore
At one point, Frank Gore was one of the NFL's leaders in "truculence", or the ability to mess you up.
He played with the San Francisco 49ers from 2005 through 2014, scoring 64 times and rushing for over 11,000 total yards. He began to fade a bit, as most running backs do, but during his stints with the New York Jets and Buffalo Bills (as well as Miami and the Indianapolis Colts), he still managed to be effective in limited roles. All told, he played from age 22 through age 27, starting 14 of 16 games for the Jets last season.
As the ESPN article also asserts, Gore turned down offers from NFL teams for his age-38 season in order to focus on his "new" career.
In The Center of the Ring...Delusion!
Gore made over $62 million in his NFL career. Williams, meanwhile, made over $160 million in his NBA career.
Based on those totals, one of two things must be true. Either both of these gentlemen have had a ton of trouble managing their finances during their careers, or both are genuinely focused on being successful combat athletes.
While I want to believe the latter, the former is far more common. Will I watch this? Probably not. That said, it's an intriguing and unlikely matchup, and I'm curious to see whether Gore (5'9") or Williams (6'3") will taste victory.
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