Chris Byrd vs. DaVarryl Williamson

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2005-10-01 : Chris Byrd 213 lbs beat DaVarryl Williamson 225 lbs by UD in round 12 of 12

Byrd Wins Snoozer over Williamson
By Thomas Gerbasi, MaxBoxing, October 2, 2005

On paper, it had the potential to be explosive, but when Chris Byrd and DaVarryl Williamson clashed for the IBF heavyweight championship in the Showtime co-feature, it was a fight that fizzled into a series of feints, clinches, and movement.

In the end, Byrd (39-2-1) retained his title via a 12-round unanimous decision, but suffered huge in terms of marketability in the wide open heavyweight division.

Scores were 115-113, and 116-112 twice, for Byrd, who retained his title for the fourth time.

"I'm off 11 months, that's what you get," said Byrd, who had not been in the ring since a victory over Jameel McCline last November. "Everybody has bad fights."

Both Byrd and Williamson (22-4) fought like good friends in the opening round, barely throwing a punch between them as the crowd quickly started booing.

After another 1:30 of the waltz in the second round, referee Vic Drakulich implored both fighters to start mixing it up, but little changed for the remainder of the frame.

The third round was just as dismal, with nary a punch thrown in anger, and Drakulich again asked the combatants for more action at the beginning of the fourth. His warning had little impact, save for a quick flurry by Byrd in the final 30 seconds that was enough to win him the round.

With trainer George Durbin expending copious amounts of energy trying to get his fighter to use some of his own, Williamson finally got some shots in on Byrd early in the fifth, and even though they landed with little effect on the champion, they were scoring points.

Round six dipped in activity level again, bringing an excruciatingly slow fight to a halt. But perhaps spurred on by a visit from NSAC Executive Director Mark Ratner to the corners, Byrd started to throw punches to the head and body in round seven, and Williamson also picked up the pace slightly.

Williamson's jab worked well in the eighth, and after a series of shots Byrd fired back with vigor for one of the few times in the fight. But the best shot came from Durbin, who told his charge: "He ain't got no problem hitting you."

Rounds nine and 10? Guess what, no action.

As the championship rounds began, perhaps both Byrd and Williamson realized that it was a championship fight, and there were finally a few decent exchanges. But when the final bell rang, a universal "boo" rose from the crowd, and it was well deserved. [1]

Preceded by:
Byrd vs. McCline
IBF Heavyweight Title Fight
# 44
Succeeded by:
Byrd vs. W. Klitschko II