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Former NFL star Frank Gore to fight ex-NBA guard Deron Williams in boxing match

Former NFL star Frank Gore to fight ex-NBA guard Deron Williams in boxing match
Former Buffalo Bills running back Frank Gore, shown Sept. 8, 2019, is a five-time Pro Bowl selection and ranks third in NFL history with 16,000 rushing yards. File Photo by Chris Szagola/UPI | License Photo

Nov. 9 (UPI) -- Former NFL star running back Frank Gore will fight ex-NBA point guard Deron Williams in a boxing match on the Jake Paul-Tommy Fury undercard Dec. 18 at Amalie Arena in Tampa, Fla., it was announced Tuesday.

Gore and Williams each will be making their professional boxing debuts. The bout is scheduled for four rounds at 215 pounds.

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The 38-year-old Gore has trained as a boxer for years and declined opportunities in the NFL this season to focus on his first pro fight, ESPN reported. Gore's manager is longtime fight rep Malki Kawa of First Round Management, who also represents multiple NFL players.

Gore, a five-time Pro Bowl selection, ranks third in NFL history with 16,000 rushing yards. He spent 16 seasons in the league, most recently in 2020 with the New York Jets.

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"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 in a news release. "Boxing has me excited, and on Dec. 18 expect fireworks!"

Williams, meanwhile, is a longtime combat sports fanatic and has trained for years in mixed martial arts. He is a part-owner of the Fortis MMA gym in Dallas, which is where he will train for this fight under coach Sayif Saud.

The 37-year-old Williams was a three-time All-Star selection in the NBA for the Utah Jazz and Brooklyn Nets. He also captured gold medals at the Olympics with the U.S. men's national team in 2008 and 2012.

"Combat sports have been a part of my life since my youngest days," Williams said in a statement. "Before I was a basketball player, I was a wrestler. 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."

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Also on the Paul-Fury undercard, Amanda Serrano -- one of the top pound-for-pound women's boxers -- will square off against Miriam Gutierrez. In another bout, Anthony Taylor, one of Paul's teammates, will fight Chris Avila, a protégé of UFC fighter Nate Diaz.

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