William Silva has come up short in each of the three biggest bouts of his career.
The Brazilian veteran realizes, though, that he has been afforded perhaps one last chance to ascend to where he wants to be in the junior welterweight division. If he conquers Cletus Seldin on Saturday night, Silva believes it’ll move him closer toward the title shot he has always wanted.
The 34-year-old Silva (28-3, 16 KOs) and the 35-year-old Seldin (25-1, 21 KOs, 1 NC) are set to square off in the 10-round co-feature of a TrillerVerz III card at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, where Seldin resides.
“It’s a great opportunity,” Silva told BoxingScene.com through a translator. “It’s gonna be a good fight for me. Seldin is a good fighter. He’s strong, he comes forward and he likes to get his opponent tired. But I’m prepared for anything he brings to the ring.”
Seldin, who is nicknamed “The Hebrew Hammer,” has won four straight bouts by knockout or technical knockout since suffering his lone loss in a bout HBO televised from Place Bell in Laval, Quebec, Canada, in December 2017. Montreal’s Yves Ulysse Jr. sent Seldin to the canvas once apiece in each of the first three rounds that night and won their 10-rounder by the same huge margin on all three scorecards (99-88).
Silva will attempt to bounce back from a fifth-round knockout loss to unbeaten junior welterweight contender Arnold Barboza Jr. (26-0, 10 KOs) two fights ago, in November 2019. He also has been beaten by undefeated, unified lightweight champ Teofimo Lopez (16-0, 12 KOs), who stopped him in the sixth round in July 2018, and Felix Verdejo (27-2, 17 KOs), who out-pointed Silva unanimously in a 10-rounder in February 2016.
“I respect Seldin,” Silva said. “I don’t wanna rank Seldin against anyone I’ve fought. Seldin is a good, good, good fighter. He has 25 wins and only one loss. The other fighters that I fought are in the past. I’m just focused now on Seldin. This a good fight for me. If I win, which I will, it’s gonna bring me to a very different place. I will be able to fight for a world title. That’s what I want. That’s why I’m training so hard to win this fight with Seldin, to get to the next level. I hope to fight for a world title.”
Junior welterweights Petros Ananyan (15-2-2, 7 KOs), of Abovyan, Armenia, and Daniel Gonzalez (20-2-1, 7 KOs), of Woodhaven, New York, are set to meet in the 10-round main event of this five-fight TrillerVerz III card. The show can be viewed on fite.tv (6 p.m. EDT; $2.99 per month or $29.99 annual subscription fee).
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.