Exclusive Interview With George Peterson - "I'm Offended When You Ask About A Rematch With Cintron"
by James Slater - Who will Paul "The Punisher" Williams fight next? When will he fight again? Will we see a rematch of the bizarre Williams-Kermit Cintron fight we saw back in May?
Article posted on 11.06.2010
Hoping to get answers to these questions and more, I called up Williams' trainer George Peterson yesterday evening (U.K) time. And though George was somewhat pushed for time he still gave me the following interview.
Here is what the trainer/corner-man had to say:
James Slater: It's a pleasure to be able to speak with you again, Mr. Peterson. What's the latest with Paul Williams, is there any idea who or when he will fight next?
George Peterson: We have nothing yet, I expect we'll hear something in a couple of weeks. But right now, we're not working on anything..
J.S: What about Kermit Cintron! As you know, Cintron and his team did demand a second fight with Paul.
G.P: He could've fought that night! He could've fought when he had the chance, but he chose to do what he did. He jumped out of the ring, not Paul!
J.S: Looking back on that fight a month or so later, it was a crazy ending - have you moved on from that fight now; have you bigger fish to fry so to speak?
G.P: Yeah, that's right. I'm actually offended when you ask me about a rematch [with Cintron]. We've moved away from that. It's not that we refuse him a rematch, he [Cintron] just won't fight. He just doesn't have it.
J.S: You feel he did jump out of the ring on purpose then? But why?
G.P: He did that because he knew he had no defence to what Paul was doing. It's not like this was the first time he's found a way out. On three other occasions he found a way out in a fight. It was the same drama in the fight with Paul; it's nothing new with Cintron. We suspected something would happen before the fight.
J.S: What other fights are you referring to, George?
G.P: Against Jesse Feliciano (in November of 2007), after he'd got the victory, he was celebrating and then all of a sudden he remembered that he had to fight Paul next. So he falls to the canvas, screaming and rolling around, saying he'd hurt his hand! We'd already agreed the fight, so we asked him how long would he need to get his hand ready - three months? Six months? A year? He said he'd let us know and he never did. Then, Cintron went on to fight [Antonio]Margarito for second time instead, and he claimed he boxed Margarito when Margarito was using loaded gloves. I'm not saying Margarito wasn't using loaded gloves, but Paul fought him after Cintron did, and he went 12-rounds with him and beat him - and if he wore loaded gloves for Cintron he sure must have worn them for Paul. And against [Sergio] Martinez, when Martinez caught Cintron with one of the most beautiful left hands you could ever see, he went down and started shouting head-butt, head-butt! This is what I'm saying, there's a lot of drama with this guy.
J.S: Do you think Kermit's fragile mentally?
G.P: Look at it; Emanuel Steward said [during commentary on Williams-Cintron] that Cintron's a moody fighter. Larry Merchant said the same thing. Just look at what he does in fights. He just doesn't have it. He's a waste of time, nobody wants to fool with him. He just makes too many excuses. We've moved away from him.
J.S: So, who will Paul fight next perhaps? We know he wants some of the action down at 147.
G.P: Paul weighed 152-pounds for Cintron, and he ate breakfast at the weigh-in. So 147 is definitely a weight he can make. But we have to move down for a reason, there's no point doing it just to prove that he can do it. Paul wants a big name at 147, that's all he needs and he'll fight at welterweight.
J.S: Paul will fight again this year won't he?
G.P: Yes, we plan two fights this year. The next fight in a few months, and then the next one at the end of the year.
J.S: There are some very interesting fights out there; as you know, Miguel Cotto won a title at 154 last week. Would Paul like that fight for example?
G.P: We'd love that, but Cotto - I don't think so! He won't fight Paul.
J.S: Are you concerned, as Paul's trainer, that his best years are maybe going past and he isn't getting the great fights, the defining fights, he wants?
G.P: It's been that way for seven or eight years. He's never gotten the fights he deserves. Everyone knows that, Paul will face anyone at any time. Does he get the credit he's due for that mentality? No. So what can he do, remain idle? He will look to stay busy, whatever that means - I don't even know what that [staying busy] means anymore. Paul just wants the opportunity to prove himself.
J.S: What about Martinez, could there be a rematch with the middleweight champion? The first fight was such a great fight.
G.P: They won't fight us. Fifty times I've asked for that fight. If you noticed, after the Cintron fight, while being interviewed, Paul called out three names - Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao and Martinez. But I think Martinez is looking at fighting Margarito or Cotto or Floyd. I guess he's having his own problems getting those fights.
J.S: Do you wish Paul had been around back when Tommy Hearns and Marvin Hagler and those guys were fighting! Back when they all fought each other, no questions asked?
G.P: It's not the same mentality today. Guys of the mentality of Tommy Hearns, they would fight against anyone. But today, they talk about it, but they won't break a sweat.
J.S: Thanks so much for your time, George.
G.P: It's always a pleasure.
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