Demetrius Andrade will defend his WBO World Middleweight title against mandatory challenger Liam Williams at Hard Rock Live at Hard Rock Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood, Florida on Saturday April 17 in America, live worldwide on DAZN – with the main event set for 6pm ET/11pm GMT.
Andrade (29-0 18 KOs) defends his title for the fourth time. ‘Boo Boo’ became a two-weight World ruler when he picked up the vacant strap against Walter Kautondokwa in October 2018 in Boston, and has since seen off Artur Akavov, Maciej Sulecki and Luke Keeler in title defenses.
Williams (23-2-1 18 KOs) fights for his first full World title against Andrade, having met Liam Smith for the interim WBO strap at Super-Welterweight in April 2017, with the Welshman moving to Middleweight after his rematch with Smith and becoming British champion at 160lbs before stopping Andrade’s old foe Alantez Fox in five rounds in December 2019.
“Liam Williams, you got what you wanted,” said Andrade. “You ran your mouth, got your rating up and here we go. April 17 your career ends. Or maybe you go back to headlining small club shows in the UK I don’t know. What I do know is that you’re getting beaten badly and then I’m on to much bigger fights and bigger nights in my career.
“It’s no secret, this isn’t the fight I wanted, but now it’s here and I will be taking care of business, taking care of Liam Williams in spectacular fashion come April 17. Then it’s whoever wants it. Canelo. GGG. Saunders. Charlo. Plant. I’m here. Undefeated. Two division World champion. Current middleweight champion of the world. I dare one of you to say my name.”
“I’ve been quite vocal saying I’ll smash him, and I actually am going to,” said Williams. “I’ve waited for this for too long now, I’m not going to let it slip through my fingers, I’ll grab the opportunity with both hands.
“I just think he’s a complete weirdo, a very strange man – I’ve watched him for some time, I used to be a bit of a fan of him back then, now I get the chance to share a ring with him and punch his face in and I can’t wait to do it. I’m going to punch lumps out of him, nonstop.
“The first couple of rounds could be tricky, but I believe that I will get on top of him and start beating him up.
“I think he might overlook me, possibly. To be honest, maybe he has deserved to get a fight with Canelo, GGG, he’s been World champion for a long time, a two-weight and three-time champion, so he’s probably deserved those fights, but his time is up now and once I deal with him, I’ll get those fights.
“Have you ever seen me going into my shell in a fight? I don’t think he’s going to have enough in him to make me do that, and let’s not forget, he’s not fought anyone like me. When I start hitting him and hurting him, no-one really knows what he’s going to do. Who’s to say he’s not going to go into his shell?”
“This is a really good fight,” said promoter Eddie Hearn. “In America, people don’t realize it’s as good a fight as it is. Liam is a big step-up from Demetrius’ recent opposition, and I think this is the fight ‘Boo Boo’ needs. I like Liam, he’s going to come in with real confidence and swagger and he’ll put it on Demetrius in the build-up, he’s a tough man and he will not take a backwards step against Demetrius, who will need to be at his best to prove he’s the number one Middleweight in the world.”
WILLIAMS: I CAN KO ODDBALL ANDRADE
Liam Williams says he has the power and the heart to knock out WBO World Middleweight king Demetrius Andrade at Hard Rock Live at Hard Rock Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood, Fl. on Saturday April 17, live worldwide on DAZN and in association with Queensberry Promotions.
Williams (23-2-1 18 KOs) has settled in Florida having completed his training camp at the famous Ingle Gym in Sheffield, and the 28 year old is counting down the days to his long-awaited first full World title fight against the unbeaten Andrade (29-0 18 KOs).
Williams and Andrade have traded barbs on social media and the Welshman, who could become his country’s 13th World champion with victory, thinks the tools in his bag will be enough to take the crown from the unbeaten champion.
“I don’t think he has the same intensity as me,’ said Williams. “I wear my heart on my sleeve. I can punch harder than him. I have a better engine than him. I’m going to bring it all on the night and I don’t think he has the answers.
“He’s a clown. I don’t think he’s wired up right, he’s got a screw loose. His mannerisms, the way he acts and talks on his interviews, he’s just a little bit strange and I can’t put my finger on it. He’s an oddball.
“It’s a risky fight for both of us. He’s the champion and I’m the number one contender. If he loses, the belt goes and that’s his status gone, but the same for me, I’m back to the bottom of the pile, there’s a lot at stake and neither of us will take a backwards step and that’s what will make it a great fight.
“The outcome is me winning, whether that’s over the distance or inside the distance, it doesn’t matter to me. As long as I take that belt back to Britain, I have no doubt about it, I’m super confident and I don’t think there’s any way that he beats me. I think I can knock him out.
“I’ve had setbacks, I’ve had injuries, I’ve been told to retire, so getting my opportunity is a real achievement, but in saying that, this is the beginning of things for me with more massive step-ups and I’m not willing to stop here.”
Williams’ clash with Andrade is part of a stacked night of action in Florida as Carlos Gongora (19-0 14 KOs) defends his IBO World Super-Middleweight title against Christopher Pearson (17-2 12 KOs).
ANDRADE WARNS WILLIAMS: ‘BACK YOUR WORDS UP’
Demetrius Andrade has warned Liam Williams to back up his talk as he defends his WBO World Middleweight title on Saturday night at Hard Rock Live at Hard Rock Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Hollywood, Fl. on Saturday April 17, live worldwide on DAZN and in association with Queensberry Promotions.
Andrade (29-0 18 KOs) puts his title on the line for the fourth time against his Welsh mandatory challenger, with the unbeaten Rhode Island ace back in action for the first time since stopping Luke Keeler in Florida in January 2020.
Williams (23-2-1 18 KOs) has been on fire since moving up to 160lbs with five KO wins from five fights, and the man known as ‘The Machine’ has been vocal in his belief that he’ll take the crown from the Olympian.
‘Boo Boo’ has bit back saying he’s heard it all before from his title challengers, but wants the visitor to back up his big talk and bring the heat in the Sunshine State.
“It’s one thing to be hyping yourself up and the fight,” said Andrade. “But you got to be concerned with what you are saying and back it up because at the end of the day, I don’t have two losses, I have never lost. They call him ‘The Machine’, but when I am done with him, he’ll be ‘The Rust Bucket.
“You’re going to see the same you always see from me – a solid game plan, dominance, landing big shots, an all-around great performance and giving people what they have been missing, the sweet science.
“I don’t think he’s going to just lay down with all the shit talking he’s been doing, but when you finally get here, it’s different. Now you have to fight, and Liam is not going to stop my train. I expect him to bring the fight because this is his opportunity, but at the end of the day he’ll be able to say, ‘I lost to Demetrius Andrade’.
“Everyone says that they are going to do this and that with me, but reality bites, and when I touch them, they fall all around the ring and go running. It’s hard to hit me, they always end the night losing and saying, ‘wow, you are better than we think’.”
Andrade’s clash with Williams is part of a stacked night of action in Florida as Carlos Gongora (19-0 14 KOs) defends his IBO World Super-Middleweight title against Christopher Pearson (17-2 12 KOs).
Heavyweight Mahammadrasul Majidov (3-0 3 KOs) is back in action and looking for a fourth straight KO win against Andrey Fedosov (31-3 25 KOs), Otha Jones III (5-0-1 2 KOs) returns to the ring in a rescheduled eight round clash with Jorge Castaneda (13-1 11 KOs), Arthur Biyarslanov (7-0 6 KOs) faces fellow unbeaten man Israel Mercado (9-0 7 KOs), Alexis Espino (7-0 5 KOs) returns quickly over six rounds against unbeaten Florida man Ty McLeod (6-0 6 KOs) and Florida native Aaron Aponte (2-0 1 KO) returns at the same speed for his third fight over four rounds against Javier Martinez (4-7 3 KOs).