Junior Welterweight Mykquan Williams Makes His Presence Felt

By: Sean Crose

“I’m taking it one step at a time,” 10-0 junior welterweight Mykquan Williams tells me, “but the ultimate goal is obviously to be world champion.” Williams recently decimated Preston Wilson in the first round of their scheduled six round affair in a performance that has been drawing attention to the Hartford native. “That was my first time fighting in New York as a professional and I enjoyed it,” he says, making it clear he appreciated “the environment and the atmosphere that was there.” Was he planning on making such quick work of Wilson? “It wasn’t my intention,” he states in his soft spoken voice, “but that’s just the way it happened.”

Coming from a challenging background in Hartford, Williams has made a conscious decision to take a better path than some of this peers. “Where I come from,” he says, “the Hartford area, some parts aren’t too great. A lot of kids are sidetracked and they start being into the streets and they start selling drugs, doing drugs, who knows what. I’m a perfect example of taking the right path and making something out of something that wasn’t so great at one point.”

Williams also wants to leave an impact on those younger than him, to “give them some type of hope and see what I’ve been through and what can come out of that instead of turning and going down a wrong path.” Williams has certainly been through a lot, losing both a father (via gun violence) and a home (via a fire) as a young child. Such challenges, however, seem to motivate the man. “How many seven or eight year olds do you know who are really dedicated to the sport?” he asks in reference to his early days in the sweet science.

Williams is well aware of the fact that the road less taken can be an uphill one, at least for a while. “It’s not what a regular teenager is used to,” he says of his routine of training and attending college (where he studies Marketing). “I’m willing to make those sacrifices, though, that a lot of people aren’t.” Being a boxer, after all, requires intense discipline. “For instance,” he says, “training every day doesn’t allow me to sometimes be a kid and go out and hang with friends and things like that. I have to make the sacrifice of going to the gym and training instead of going to a basketball game or going out to eat with friends.”

Williams credits others for helping him stay on the right track. “I would say it’s probably the people around me,” he asserts when asked what led him to the life he now leads. “They want to see me succeed and do better and make something good out of something that wasn’t always so great. They want to see better things for me.” He has particularly kind words for his trainer, Paul Cichon. “Paul has been my only trainer and I’ve been with him for about 11 years,” he says. “My aunt used to fight for him back in the day and she brought me to him, and since then we’ve always stuck together, we’ve traveled to several different gyms together. I’ve never left his side.”

“I had fifty eight amateur fights,” he states of those early days “I wracked up quite a few amateur titles.” And now Cichon, the man who has led him through the amateurs is leading him through the pros. “He’s always been there for me,” states Williams. “I always looked at him as a father figure.” Another person Williams admires is famed manager Jackie Kallen, who he’s chosen to guide his career. “Paul introduced me to Jackie years ago,” he claims. “I was still amateur at the time and Paul actually flew her out her to watch me fight.” Kallen kept in touch over time. “We always kept her in mind for when I went pro, so she could manage me.”

“She’s a good person,” he adds, “a good lady.”

And as for the future? “I am taking it one step at a time,” says Williams, “but the ultimate goal is obviously to be world champion…also, to inspire the youth, as well.”

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