4 Great Fights, 1 Great Week in Boxing
Thought I'd start posting here again since there really is too much good stuff happening. For today, I'm going to focus on four great fights that happened during the last week.
David Haye vs. Dereck Chisora ~ TKO5 Haye
It was a circus leading up to this fight, as well as controversy. Fresh off the brawl that happened at the post-fight press conference of V. Klitschko vs. Chisora, this fight had to be sanctioned by the Luxembourg Boxing Federation instead of the British Boxing Board of Control. This was because the BBBofC revoked Chisora's license, and Haye's license lapsed following his "retirement".
This was a whole lot of pre-fight hype. So did it live up to the hype?
In short, it did. Unlike his fight with Wladimir Klitschko, David Haye came out aggressive and swinging. Weighing 37lbs less than Chisora, Haye still managed to overpower the bigger man.
Chisora, meanwhile, was very much a live dog. While he threw significantly less than Haye, everything he did threw was with bad intentions. In round four, it very much looked like Haye was going to be in trouble if the fight continued.
But it was not to be. Haye succeeded in doing what nobody else had done. He put Chisora on the floor, and repeated that feat a few seconds later. In stopping Chisora, Haye displayed exactly what got everyone excited about him in the first place: technique, speed, and power.
Amir Khan vs. Danny Garcia ~ TKO4 Garcia
What has always made Khan exciting was flaws. This isn't to say he's got lousy technique, but it is to say he sometimes exhibits too much heart. He's willing to fight anybody, and fights even when he doesn't need to.
For the first two rounds, Khan was Garcia's superior. With lightning fast hands, Khan was unleashing his arsenal of jabs, straights, hooks, and uppercuts. A cut eventually opened up on Garcia's eye, and it looked like it was going to be Khan's night yet again.
But while Khan was busy landing his flurries, Garcia began to time his counters. It was in round 3 that one punch changed everything. Khan was floored, and got up with legs that resembled wet noodles. Somehow, he finished the round.
In round 4, Khan came out swinging again, and was floored again. At this moment, he knew the only way to win this fight was to go to war. When he rose, he did all he could to knock Garcia out. Garcia, displaying patience, floored Khan once more. It was here that the ref stepped in and mercifully stopped the fight.
Khan may not be the talent we all expect, but he definitely brings excitment. In this time where many high level boxers tend to avoid each other, Khan's displayed a willingness to fight anyone. As such, he's welcome on my television at any time.
Sonny Boy Jaro vs. Toshiyuki Igarashi ~ MD Igarashi
Sonny Boy Jaro's Cinderella story, that began when he knocked out legendary flyweight champion Pongsaklek Wonjongkam, came to an end. I guess, at some point, it had to. For the record, the scores were, 116-112, 112-116, 113-115. I personally scored it a draw, with the full acknowledgment that scoring largely falls on what you appreciate in a fight.
If this was Sonny Boy Jaro's last title reign, however, at least he went out with a bang. The hard-punching Jaro managed to stagger Igarashi once, and certainly marked up the olympian's face. Those who did not watch the fight but did see the aftermath may be forgiven for thinking Jaro may have been robbed.
Igarashi, for his part, did deserve to win. He was elusive, threw a high volume of punches, and placed them well. More than that, he exhibited a whole lot of heart and courage under fire.
I'm interested in what will happen to both fighters. Igarashi doubtlessly will return to Japanese network television, perhaps battling Takuya Kogawa or Pongsaklek Wonjongkam.
As for Jaro, I'd watch him any time. Of particular intrigue would be any potential match up with Brian Viloria, Giovani Segura, or Luis Concepcion.
Janeth Perez vs. Riyo Togo ~ UD Perez
I'm not always a fan of women's boxing. The talent pool is shallow. Those who are good sometimes have an entire division to themselves, with opponents showing up just to collect paycheques.
That can't be said for Perez-Togo. Yes, Riyo Togo was an opponent, but she was clearly there to win.
For the for two rounds Perez was landing at Togo's chin on a whim. Every single time she connected, Togo's reaction looked ugly. But by the 3rd round, it became obvious that Togo wasn't going down.
On the contrary, she was more than willing to walk into Perez' punches so she could land her own harder shots. Togo kept walking forward, kept pressing Perez to the ropes, showing little regard for Perez' power.
Soon, Togo did what Perez didn't want to do. She goaded Perez into a war. And what a war it was!
So far this year, this bout is my favourite women's boxing fight.