Winky Wright failed to overcome both his opponent and a two year layoff as the 37 year old former IBF light middle champion was handled by ex-WBO welter kingpin Paul Williams over 12 rounds at middleweight.
The pair exchanged leather last night at the Mandalay Bay Casino in Las Vegas and it was clear from the start that Wright's once highly vaunted defense was not as sharp as it once was.
Williams had little difficulty finding the target against the once elusive Wright in the early going and was far busier than the older man. Wright began to get the timing of Williams by the middle rounds, picking off punches on his gloves and responding with an accurate offense of his own.
But Wright couldn't keep up with the 27 year old Williams, who began to pull away in the later rounds, belting the former IBF 154 lb titlist with both hands and pulling away to capture victory with a wide 120-108 and 119-109 twice unanimous decision.
Williams improves to 37-1 (27), while iron-chinned Wright drops to 51-5-1 (25), having lost his second bout in a row.
On the undercard, heavyweight Chris Arreola, 27-0 (24), continued his march to a world title shot by stopping Jameel McCline, 39-10-3 (23), in the fourth to retain the NABF belt.
Arreola went after the taller McCline right away, digging into the head and body of the 38 year old veteran. McCline fought back and was successful at times but the younger Arreola was able to shake off anything that he was struck with.
By the fourth frame, Arreola had closed in and decked McCline with a sharp right hand. The former world title challenger was unable to beat the count and declared knocked out at 2:01 of the frame.