Boxing


Darchinyan versus Donaire 2: The Next Logical Step

Vic Darchinyan02.11.08 - By Carlo Pamintuan - One night, two different cards, two different fights that ultimately lead to one. The next logical step at for world champions Vic “The Raging Bull” Darchinyan (31-1-1, 25 KOs) and Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire (20-1-0, 13 KOs) leads them to each other, again. It was roughly 15 months ago when their paths crossed for the first time. Back then, Darchinyan was the more celebrated fighter. He was unbeaten in 28 fights, with 23 of those not reaching the final bell. Donaire, on the other hand, was a silent operator. He was going down in weight from 115 to challenge the champion who holds a win over his brother, Glenn.

There was some bad blood between the two as Donaire sorely wanted to avenge his brother’s defeat while Darchinyan was out to prove that it was time to move to 115 because there was nobody worth fighting at 112 anymore. Darchinyan even went as far as calling Donaire “nothing but a ballet dancer” in his website.

When fight night came, Donaire looked more prepared than the defending champion. It seemed like Darchinyan did not really prepare for the fight as he thought that power was enough to beat his challenger.

In the fifth round of that fight, Donaire unleashed an authoritative left counter just as the champion was preparing to let loose one of his patented rights. Darchinyan dropped face first to the canvass, tried to get up, but then fell back down again. That knockout won both the KO of the Year and Upset of the Year awards from Ring Magazine and it also catapulted Donaire to superstardom in his home country of the Philippines.

After than defeat, Darchinyan went up to 115 while Donaire stayed at 112. Darchinyan defeated Federico Catubay, drew with Z Gorres (which was supposed to be a clear victory for Darchinyan), before going on to knockout Dmitri Kirilov for the IBF super flyweight title. Donaire, on the other hand, fought only one fight and that was against Luis Maldonaldo whom he defeated via TKO in 8. Donaire’s inactivity was largely due to disputes with his former promoter.

Though both finished their opponents before their fights ended, there was a clear contrast between how they won. Darchinyan was a heavy underdog against Christian Mijares, who was holding the WBA and WBC versions of the super flyweight title. The stylist from Mexico was supposed to make Darchinyan’s attacks look foolish. He was supposed to telegraph all of Darchinyan’s slow punches and be out of harm’s way long before Darchinyan’s throws his combos. Very few gave Darchinyan a chance to look good against, much less beat, Mijares.

Darchinyan floored Mijares with a gruesome uppercut and the very first round and took him out in the ninth with a brutal combination. The referee did not even bother to finish his count as it was clear that Mijares was not fit to continue.

On the other hand, Donaire was supposed to steamroll over his mandatory challenger, Moruti Mthalane. However, Donaire looked out of sync for most of the fight. He did not look anything like the fighter who demolished Darchinyan and bludgeoned Maldonado. The champion was groping for form and the challenger was holding his own.

Lucky for Donaire, one of his punches caused a cut on the challenger’s left eyelid prompting the referee, with input from the ringside doctor, to stop the fight. The challenger was visibly anguished that it had to be stopped because he knew he had a shot at winning.

After all this, it is but logical to have Darchinyan and Donaire face each other next. Darchinyan is aching to prove that his defeat was nothing but a fluke while Donaire still yearns for the big time fights that he thought he would get after beating Darchinyan last year. The other champions at 112 have made it clear that they have no ambition of unifying their titles with Donaire’s. For Darchinyan, the other champ at 115, Fernando Montiel, has a fight scheduled as of the moment so the coronation of an undisputed champion at 115 will have to wait a bit longer.

The people want to see this fight again and both fighters have good reasons to fight each other again. Boxing is often criticized by people because the best of the best usually stay away from each other. Well, this fight has none of that. Darchinyan and Donaire are more than willing to mix it up with each other again, and as written above it is the logical next step. This fight should be made for all the boxing fans out there.

Will the Raging Bull finally bore through Donaire? Or will the Filipino Flash knock Darchinyan out called again? Well, those are the questions that should be answered soon.

Article posted on 02.11.2008



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