By Chris Cella
This Friday night from the Indian School in Santa Fe, New Mexico, two heavy-handed lightweights will go to battle as part of ESPN’s acclaimed series Friday Night Fights. Dannie Williams (22-2, 18 KO) and John Molina (24-2, 19 KO) will throw hands as the main event of the evening as each boxer looks to move one step closer to a capturing a title, something both warriors fell short of this past calendar year.
Last March, Williams fought a hardnosed battle against Hank Lundy for the NABF lightweight title, and despite dropping Lundy in the first round of the 10-round fight, Williams came up short on the judge’s score cards and lost a unanimous decision.
For Molina, this fight is more than just putting himself back in the title picture; it is about recovering from the worst loss of his career last September, when he was unable to make it out of the first round against Antonio DeMarco for the WBC lightweight title.
“I need to show the world in this fight that my last televised fight was not me. That was a fluke,” said Williams.
“The boxing world needs to see the real Dannie Williams. 2013 is a huge year for me. After I take care of business on Friday night, I want to get right back in the ring against ranked opponents and move my way to the top of the lightweight division.”
Both fighters have proven to be fast starters and strong finishers, stopping their opponents early in nearly all of their knockout victories. But with Molina coming into this fight against such a powerful opponent following a devastating first round TKO loss, it will be interesting to see how he comes out of the gate.
Undoubtedly, Williams will go right after Molina and bring the fight to him, forcing him to go to war. Despite have two losses as a professional, Williams has never been stopped, so there won’t be much concern of Molina’s ability to finish.
Stylistically, these two knockout artists with a combined 37 KO in 46 wins should put on quite the show for the fans, but Williams believes he has the edge to not only exit the ring victoriously and move a bit closer to once again fighting for a belt, but also add another knockout loss to Molina’s resume.
“John Molina is a big, strong kid and I think he’s a real good opponent,” Williams told TheSweetScience. “I definitely don’t go by what happened to him in his last fight. It’s going to be a hell of a fight. I’m going to be real shocked if we hear the bell for round 10.”
Regardless of who emerges the victor of this war, this fight is a mere stepping stone, and the winner will need to prove that he is capable of stepping up to the big stage and defeating a top name.
ESPN’s Friday Night Fights will be begin live coverage at 9 p.m. Eastern.