Carl Williams (R) walks to his corner after being stopped by Mike Tyson. (AP)Carl "The Truth" Williams, one of a core of solid heavyweight contenders in the 1980s, died Sunday of complications from throat cancer at 53, according to the New York Daily News.
Williams, who finished his career 30-10 with 21 knockouts, lost heavyweight title bouts to Larry Holmes by decision in 1985 and to Mike Tyson by first-round knockout in 1989.
Williams fought a veritable who's who of the world's best heavyweights during his era, defeating Trevor Berbick, Bert Cooper, Jesse Ferguson and James Tillis and losing to Tyson, Holmes, Tim Witherspoon, Mike Weaver, Tommy Morrison and Frank Bruno.
Williams was a skilled fighter who fought in a quality era. Randy Gordon, the former chairman of the New York State Athletic Commission, told journalist Lyle Fitzsimmons that Williams would have been a legitimate contender in the current heavyweight divisions.
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To me he was a fighter who came along at the wrong time, right between Larry Holmes and Mike Tyson. I have no doubt that if Williams were fighting today he'd be the one guy capable of upsetting the Klitschko brothers and certainly capable of teaching the rest of the division how a heavyweight should use the jab.