Boxing


If James Toney And Fres Oquendo Fought Again, Who Would Win?

by James Slater - The argument between the two camps about who won the fight goes on, but it looks extremely doubtful that heavyweights James Toney and Fres Oquendo will meet in a rematch. It was back on December 13th, in Cabazon, California, on a Dan Goossen promoted show, that "Lights Out" and "Fast Fres" met, of course, and the result was immediately referred to as a controversial one. The split decision awarded to Toney so angered Oquendo's manager, Tom Tsatas, he brought in his lawyer and sought to appeal the decision..

Tsatas and his fighter also offered Toney and his team a return bout with the agreement that if Oquendo didn't KO the 40-year-old all-time great, all the money would go to Toney. Three weeks on from the fight, however, and there has been no agreement to have a second one. Toney, who still believes he can beat either Wladimir or Vitali Klitschko AND become undisputed heavyweight champion, is not interested in a return with Oquendo - who he says he definitely beat.

Goossen, Toney's promoter, will likely do all he can to get his fighter a shot at a world title - and who can really blame him? After all, boxing is a business and Toney (and Goossen) would make far more money from a heavyweight title fight than from a rematch with the 35-year-old Puerto Rican. This is not to say this is the only reason Team Toney will go for a shot at a belt - "Lights Out" cares more about his legacy at this point than money - but it all adds up to leaving the man deserving of something good to come out of a bad situation, with nothing.

For the purposes of this article, though, this writer suggests what might have happened had Oquendo and Toney met again in an immediate rematch.

Though he needs to train harder and lose weight to be able to box effectively, there is little to no chance Toney would have done so for a rematch with Oquendo - if he will for any future fight. Therefore it's pretty safe to assume Oquendo would have met the same version of Toney he met late last year. Oquendo, for his part, was guilty of giving the early rounds away in December, and this eventually wound up costing him dearly. Would he have come out fast in a bid to either put enough rounds in the bag to secure a victory or maybe even force a stoppage a second time around? It's possible, but being a cautious fighter by nature, Oquendo, though he may say different, would likely have fought much the same way. It's hard for a veteran fighter to change his ways.

In all likelihood, a rematch would have played out almost exactly like the ugly first fight. This writer agrees that Oquendo deserved to have had his hand raised in December, and had he not had a point controversially deducted in round 8 for throwing a shot to the back of the head, he would have at least been awarded a draw. If a return had taken place it's unlikely another point would have been taken away from Oquendo, as he would not have made the mistake of letting a punch go after Toney had put into practice his defensive move of turning his head when under fire. Therefore, once again in better physical condition than Toney, Oquendo would have had a great chance of getting himself a points win.

Though this turn of events would have left Oquendo without his KO, thus forcing him into giving his full purse to Toney (based on the offer extended to Toney for a rematch), he would have at least gotten himself a win. It just seems unlikely Oquendo would have KO'd Toney, a fighter who though past his best, has never looked close to being counted out.

This is all conjecture, of course, because the two fighters appear headed in different directions. But this writer does feel - as he feels he did in fight #1 - that Fres Oquendo would have edged James Toney over 12 close rounds in a rematch.

Article posted on 02.01.2009



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