by Jesse Ian Lardies
With the halfway mark of the 2012 calender year rapidly approaching and two highly anticipated rematches being scuttled at the 11’th hour, boxing fans are left craving more meaningful matches than what is currently being offered. A June clash between a certain Filipino Congressman and an unbeaten California native will assist to temporarily sate our collective blood-lust, but to really bring this years’ fistic crescendo to full boil, several interesting alternative bouts have been outlined below for your viewing pleasure.
Juan Manuel “Dinamita” Marquez vs Brandon”Bam Bam” Rios – A match-up like this would resonate well with the fans and would be a respectable per-per-view main event. Deck out the card with similar fighters in the “Latin Fury” mold and you have a very compelling selling point. The fan-friendly but aging warrior, Marquez (54-6-1, 39KOs), taking on the much younger Mexican-American banger, Brandon Rios (30-0-1, 22KOs). Both men have the ability to end matters early but Rios’ high intensity pressure fighting and Marquez’ intelligent counter punching would surely produce some intensely dramatic moments.
Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez vs Miguel Angel Cotto – After performing courageously but ultimately coming up short against Floyd Mayweather earlier in the month, Miguel Cotto (37-3, 30KOs) is in a good position to secure a clash with the Argentinian southpaw, Maravilla (49-2-2, 28KOs). A win here would re-solidify Cotto’s standing amongst the best middleweights in the world and could conceivably lead to a high-dollar rematch with the undefeated Mayweather. The legions of Miguel Cotto supporters that would undoubtedly tune in to see this brawl would place lineal middleweight king, Sergio Martinez, on a bigger stage than he’s ever been on and perhaps the magnitude of the event would draw out the best qualities from both men.
Amir “King” Khan vs “Vicious” Victor Ortiz – With Andre Berto and Lamont Peterson temporarily sidelined due to failed random drug screenings, both of their opponents are left with solid, yet unremarkable opposition to take their places. With the two much-awaited rematches delayed indefinitely, a clash between the slick Brit and the explosive Mexican-American seems a natural fit. Amir Khan (26-2, 18KOs) and Victor Ortiz (29-3-2, 22KOs) would present one another with interesting stylistic challenges and the likelihood for a knockdown filled affair is high.
Paulie “Magic Man” Malignaggi vs Devon Alexander “The Great” – Over the past year or so, WBA welterweight titlist, Paul Malignaggi (31-4, 7KOs), has been involved in some heated social media sparring with former unified jr. welterweight champion Devon Alexander (23-1, 13KOs) and his long-time trainer and manager, Kevin Cunningham. With several well documented ‘Twitter wars’ committed to public record, the tensions came to a head between the two camps when in October of last year, Malignaggi was seen sporting a custom T-shirt reading “Devon is my bitch” (following his victory over fringe contender, Orlando Lora). Malignaggi officially threw down the proverbial gauntlet in a move that he might come to regret due to Devon’s excellent timing and unique usage of angles. However, the Magic Man has proven that with his in-ring experiences have come wisdom and with Paulie’s fast and accurate hands things could quickly go south for the 25 year old St. Louis native should these two meet in the ring later this year.
Yuriorkis “El Ciclon de Guantanamo” Gamboa vs Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire – These two incredible athletes have the distinction of being some of the most talented fighters in the sport today. Gamboa is a highly decorated former Olympian with preternatural speed while Donaire brings numerous accolades as well as several championships to the fold. Both men have exceptional reflexes, punching power and posses a genuine natural killer instinct. Yuriorkis Gamboa (21-0, 16KOs) usually fights around featherweight (126 lb), while Donaire has recently moved up to the stacked super bantamweight division (122 lb) in hopes of bigger paydays. For professionals like Yuri Gamboa and Nonito Donaire, a timely agreement over a contracted division should be reached (as the deficit in weight is not too large) and the match-up that has ‘barn-burner’ and fight-of-the-year written all over it can realistically be made.
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