Mar 9, 2008

1 out of 4 Joker's Boxing Corner

Tonight I'm in the mood to write about boxing, so bear with me and if you're not interested, no worries, there are more things to be written about. For now though, let's talk box.

Lately I've been swamped by work and I hadn't been able to write about some fights I've had the pleasure to see lately that really truly deserve to have something written about them by a self proclaimed boxing freak. First on the list, Last weekend's third installment of the Israel Vazquez VS Rafael Marquez Trilogy.

When you say trilogy, people normally think about movies and with good reason. There's the Godfather series, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, Matrix, Back to the Future and some others. But when you talk to me about trilogies, I also sometimes have to think of boxing in the sense that to have a great fight is a beautiful thing, but to have three fights that engage everyone in the arena, now THAT takes effort, talent and drama.

Recent memory offers The Arturo Gatti trilogy which was memorable not because it was talent ridden but because it was duked out by two classy guys with no concept of defense. Look further back and you'll see names like Joe Frasier, Ali, Floyd Patterson and other greats that made boxing fans look in awe. This past weekend, boxing fans were treated to a showcase of elite fighters and I do not utilize the word elite at all lightly. These are two of the best fighters I've ever seen lace up gloves and to show how good the fight was let me tell you how I came about to see it.

First off, I missed the fight because I had a prior commitment and I was going to see it at 1 AM. I got home, fell asleep and woke up randomly at 4 AM. Lucky for me, there was actually another replay at that time for me to see.

"I'll see the first couple of rounds and check if it was good." I said.

An hour later my heart rate was through the roof and I couldn't believe the messed up slug match I saw. Two knockdowns, one for each fighter, nasty cuts, a point deduction for low blows, drama, controversy and enough power shots to put anyone else in that division to sleep. Israel Vazquez scored his second victory over one of the best fighters on the Earth and being a fan of both fighters, I honestly couldn't complain with the result and instead must echo what some other people said. In the 12the round, Marquez got his ass handed to him, clean and simple. Trust me, I'm a huge Marquez fan but I also call them like I see them and Rafael got tagged over and over again. In the closing seconds Vazquez knocked Marquez back so hard that the only two things that kept Marquez standing were the corner and his hands on the ropes. The ref stands in and calls a standing 8 count. Some people bitch at this but I was very satisfied that the ref did that because I'm sure some other people would have even considered to stop the fight and the ref gave Marquez a fighting shot. Another thing that happened was that Marquez got deducted a point for low blows. If you see the shot that prompted the ref to deduct the point, you'd say that it wasn't that low and guess what, you'd be right, but like 8 other shots had strayed lower than that one, he'd been warned and he'd gotten away with it so to disuade the fighter to give yet another hook shot to the balls, he took the point away.

The rest was simply a mesmerizing display of skill and guess what, they might actually do it a fourth time. At a stoppage and TKO victory for Marquez and a KO victory and a decision for Vazquez, no one would mind this a fourth time or a fifth time for that matter. Some people would probably say how could you see two fighters fight often so many times and my only response is, watch the matches, they've gotten better with each match, they've both learned from every fight and they've consistenly upped the game without taking ONE back step. A while back I gave a profile and a hype up to the Jermain Taylor / Kelly Pavlik matchup and though it was highly competitive, it was nowhere near what Marquez and Vazquez accomplished last Saturday.

In short, if you know anyone who taped it or TIVO'd it and you actually like boxing, please watch this match. This year is looking to be spectacular for fight fans.

As for me, well, one post down, three to go.

By the way, this is what a Champion looks like ladies and gentlemen.



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