Will "D-Train" stay on Track against "Touch of Sleep"?

27.04.05 - By Geoff Mckay: This Saturday, James Toney and John Ruiz will face each other for the WBA championship belt. It will be interesting to see if Toney can follow in Roy Jones’ shoes, and outbox the larger man, however, the fight I am really interested in is on the under card, which has Derrick “D-Train” Jefferson battling DaVarryl “Touch of Sleep” Williamson..

The betting odds that I was able to find favor Williamson, although not by a large margin, and it is clear that the odds makers are as hesitant as many in trying to call the outcome of this fight. There are enough variables to cast doubt on any prediction. How good is Williamson? He has an impressive win over Oliver McCall, but we watched him get thoroughly manhandled and KO’d in the first round by Joe Mesi. Has Jefferson dealt with his Wladimir Klitschko disaster? Will he still possess the aggression that made him so effective?

One thing I have come to take a strong dislike to these days are boxing articles that make no point, no argument, or no real predictions too sink your teeth into. They resolve nothing, and you can neither agree nor disagree with them. You know the kind I am talking about, the ones that say, “this MAY happen IF”, or “that SHOULD transpire BUT”, so even though this fight may go either way, I am once again going to step out on a limb, (I’m asking for it aren’t I?), and make a clear cut prediction.

Let me start by saying that I am a fan of Derrick Jefferson. I think the sport needs more men like him. He fights hard, gets up when he is knocked down, and is courteous and witty in post fight interviews. Do you remember what he said to Larry Merchant after he had broken his ankle in the Maskaev Fight?

“Who ever heard of twisting your ankle in Boxing? I twisted my ankle in Basketball, but that was when I was going up for a dunk!!” The disgust on his face showed he thought it was as unusual as we all did.

But this incident showed one of the main personality traits that I believe will carry D-train to victory over Williamson. He is willing to fight on no matter what, and he can fight when he is hurt. He is a large, powerful heavyweight who will come ahead aggressively and who can really crack, this combined with his weight advantage will give him the edge, and I don’t think Williamson will be able to keep him at Bay.

They say styles make fights, and if you examine the styles, there are hints as to how this fight will unfold. Williamson has a high KO percentage, but if you look closely you will see that he is more cautious with the larger men, such as Jefferson who is 3 inches taller and 20 pounds heavier, and that his most recent upper tear opponents, Oliver McCall and Elisio Castillo have gone the distance. Castillo was even able to score a knockdown.

I believe that Williamson will start the fight cautious, because he knows he doesn’t have the power that Jefferson does, and that will be fatal against a large, aggressive heavyweight like Jefferson. Jefferson is used to going to war, and will keep firing, even when hurt. When he sent Maurice Harris to the moon with that massive left hook in the fifth round of their fight, he was in the process of recovering from a nice Harris combination.

Any article addressing this match up must, by necessity, address the fact that both men have fought Wladimir Klitschko. Jefferson was blown out in 2, while Williamson lost a controversial split decision after a head but opened up Klitschko’s forehead. Williamson was also able to score a knockdown on Klitschko. No one really knows what to expect from Wladimir Klitschko anymore, he scorches top ranked fighters, then losses to, or struggles with lesser opponents. He shows brilliant boxing style, and gets KO’d in the same fight. There is one clear demarcation line to consider however, and that is his loss to Corrie Sanders. It is clear that Wladimir has never been the same after this defeat, and I believe a loss against Wladimir before Sanders in no way compares to a loss after Sanders. They are simply too different fighters and a comparison is impossible. Forget whether or not Williamson’s knockdown of Klitschko was a flash one, forget whether or not he would have taken Wladimir out, and forget that Jefferson got bombed out in two; they simply weren’t fighting the same man.

Jefferson said something after his loss to Oleg Maskaev that made an impression on me because there was truth in his eyes. He said

“I hope HBO gives me another shot because to beat me, someone is going to have to break my neck”. Jefferson is getting another shot now, probably his last one, and I think he realizes it. He is too big, to strong, and too aggressive for Williamson. He will come out fired up this time because everything depends on it. Williamson may hurt Jefferson, but D-train will fight through it, and Williamson doesn’t have the chin, the power, or the size to last.

Derrick “D-Train” Jefferson KO 6 DaVarryl “Touch of Sleep” Williamson

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Article posted on 27.04.2005

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