The mockery of boxing continues as more former non-boxing athletes look to cash in on the craze. In recent news, boxing has quickly become a huge trend of retired athletes trying to make a quick payday. Going a few rounds in a ring could seem like such as easy task. The world of basketball and football collide on the undercard of Jake Paul and Tommy Fury. Former NFL running back Frank Gore and former NBA point guard Deron Williams will make their professional boxing debut on Dec. 18. The two are scheduled for four rounds.
For Frank Gore, boxing has been something he has been training for a long time. As for Deron Williams, his passion for mixed martial arts has led him to try a career in boxing. Gore is rep by First Round Management while Williams is being coached by Sayif Saud. Gore released a statement after the announcement was made was public.
“I’m excited to be fighting on this card and can’t wait to show the world what I’ve been working on,” Gore said. “Boxing has me excited, and on Dec. 18 expect fireworks!”
Despite Gore not being officially retired, the NFL’s 3rd leading rusher has yet to play an NFL down this season for a team. But, Gore has stated he’s being training to make the transition to boxing for quite some time.
“I’ve been training for both—football and boxing,” he told Ian Rapoport of NFL.com. “I’ve always loved boxing, so that’s what I’ve been doing. And we’re trying to make a fight happen. If we do that, you’ll see me in the ring.”
In an interview with Brent Brookhouse of CBS Sports, Williams spoke about his desire and passion for combat sports while gearing up for his bout.
“Combat sports have been a part of my life since my youngest days. Before I was a basketball player, I was a wrestler,” Williams said in a release. “Since 2015, I have had the privilege of owning an MMA gym, and through that I have trained in various martial arts to stay active. Over the last year, I’ve been waiting for the right opportunity to translate my training into a professional debut. I’m making that happen on Dec. 18 against Frank, one of the physically strongest NFL players in history.”
Deron Williams was a three-time NBA All-Star selection with the Utah Jazz and Brooklyn Nets. He won gold at the Olympics with the U.S. men’s national team in 2008 and 2012. Frank Gore is a five-time Pro Bowl selection and ranks third in NFL history with 16,000 rushing yards. The San Francisco 49ers’ all-time leading rusher spent 16 seasons in the league.