With no fights to cover until Mayweather-Ortiz week, I’m knee-deep in writing – presently lost somewhere around the border around 1915-1919. My Jan. 1 deadline approaches for “The History of Boxing in New Mexico, Volume I,” due out next year by McFarland Press.
Photo above: A ticket stub from the scrapbook of New Mexico’s first world title challenger, Benny Chavez, who was in attendance for the Sept. 19, 1915 showdown between Albuquerque’s Benny Cordova and Texas legend Bobby Waugh – it was the third time the two fought. Altogether, Cordova and Waugh battled seven times and 107 rounds – from Mexico to Texas to New Mexico. Both, Benny Cordova and Benny Chavez, feature prominently in the book.
What could’ve been remembered as a classic will now be recalled as a controversy. In a battle of bantams to determine a co-king at 118 or a No. 1 to the recognized ruler – Nonito Donaire, of course – Abner Mares won a marred majority decision over Joseph “King Kong” Agbeko, last night at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. The fight was marred by countless low blows by Mares – which went unpunished by referee Russell Mora. Two bad knockdowns – one a stumble without a punch – the other, a blatant low blow that was ruled a knockdown – further marred the fight, giving it to Mares. For a full report and a huge photo gallery, check out Fightnews . . . |more|
Why does one of the most anticipated showdowns of the year get a four-bout undercard of “gimme” fights? Got me. The highlight of the undercard was not so much Eric Molina, who took out his carefully chosen foe, but the heart of his opponent, Southern slugger Warren Browning.
And here’s a good question: How does the WBA allow a late, late sub like Ramzan Adaev, who came in at 148 pounds, to fight for the vacant Fedecaribe LIGHT WELTERWEIGHT title (that’s 140 pounds) against 139-pound Angelo Santana? Nice. Guess you can bend the rules as far as you want when there’s no one paying attention to “title fights” anymore, and while someone is there to sign the check.
Sometimes the most boring fights on the planet can produce decent shots. Shouldn’t be that way. Crap fights should translate to crap photos. But at last night’s Strikeforce Challengers show at the Palms in Las Vegas, which had one mediocre fight (the main event), one controversial stoppage in 25 seconds (Ronda Rousey won by submission … again) and six snoozers, the shots were better than the action. Stay tuned for more at Fightnews.com later this morning.
Okay, so only a handful of fight fans crammed into the Hard Rock’s Lounge to watch yesterday’s uneventful weigh-in. Tonight’s bantamweight showdown between Joseph “King Kong” Agbeko and Abner Mares should make up for the slow pre-fight “build-up.” Both fighters made attempts at yesterday’s weigh-in. Agbeko tried to get Mares to flinch during their face-off (it didn’t work) and Mares’ team wore black T-shirts depicting an Aztec warrior holding up the head of a gorilla with “The Death of King Kong” beneath it – not the most political thing to do (just ask David Haye how that worked for his fanfare.)
Photo: Joseph “King Kong” Agbeko says Abner Mares will still have a future and a chance to be a bantamweight champion . . . when he recovers from the loss he will give him Saturday night on Showtime’s finale to their bantam tourney. The tourney will reveal the top champ at 118 pounds . . . or the No. 1 to bantam king Nonito Donaire, who was not part of the tourney.