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Deron Williams Is Optimistic He’ll Do Well In His Boxing Debut In Part Because ‘I’m Not Nate Robinson’

Deron Williams is on the verge of becoming the latest NBA player to appear in a boxing ring. Williams will go toe-to-toe with another athlete, longtime NFL running back Frank Gore, on the undercard on the upcoming pay-per-view headlined by a bout between Jake Paul and Tommy Fury on Dec. 18.

One of the recent events pitting Paul against someone included a matchup with Nate Robinson last year, which ended with a Paul victory by knockout in the second round thanks to a right that caught Robinson cleanly and sent him to the mat. Plenty of folks in the basketball world got jokes off at his expense, while Robinson said a number reached out in the aftermath.

During his press conference on Tuesday afternoon, Williams alluded to that fight and made clear that his history with combat sports is a bit different than Robinson’s, and as a result, he’s optimistic he will not suffer a similar fate.

“I watched it. I’m not Nate Robinson. I think I have a little more experience than Nate,” Williams said, per Eric Woodyard of ESPN. “I’ve been training stand-up and boxing for 8-10 years. 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.”

The four-round fight features Williams, who has a six-inch height advantage, as a -225 favorite. However, Gore had 742 yards from scrimmage for the New York Jets last year, while Williams last appeared in the NBA in 2017.