Sunday, July 10, 2011

Brandon Rios KO's Urbano Antillon, Paul Wlliams Loses to Erislandy Lara but gets the "Win"

Chris Farina/Top Rank

By Randy De La O

Kudos to Showtime. Saturday night's fight at the Home Depot Center between WBA Lightweight Champion Brandon Rios and Challenger Urbano Antillon represented everything that is good about boxing; good matchmaking, a real rivalry, two likable opponents, great action -while it lasted - and a definitive, no-nonsense and indisputable win, a spectacular third round knockout of Antillon by Rios. It just doesn't get any better than this. Both fighters had an old school persona about them. Neither guy is afraid to mix it up, both can punch and both can take it. Last night though, Rios just took it better.

Going into the third round, it was still a close fight and living up to everyone's expectations, until Rios landed a right hand that put Antillon on the canvas. He did it again a little later in the round. Antillon got up and was about to resume fighting, until he started to stagger across the ring, prompting referee David Mendoza to halt the fight at 2:49 of the third round.

It's hard not to like a guy like Rios. He never stops fighting but he does get hit a lot. I hope he tightens up his defense, even a little bit. Guys like Rios never come out of the fight game undamaged over the long haul. I don't really expect Rios to fight any other way. It's not in his nature to fight any other way. Rios is my kind of fighter.

Congrats to Carlos Molina on his upset of Kermit Cintron last night. It was his will to win and his big heart that won the fight for him.

Photo: Emily Harney

If the Rios vs Antillon fight showed the best side of boxing, than the Paul Williams vs Erislandy Lara fight, at the Boardwalk Hall in New Jersey, showed the worst side. Not so much the fight itself, which, while not spectacular and certainly anti-climatic after watching the Rios vs Antillon fight, was at least a good performance by Lara, who dominated Williams for most of the fight. What was bad, and bad for boxing was the judging. In a fight that was clearly and indisputably won by Lara, the judges awarded the fight to Williams. The judges should be called to the carpet for this fight and than tarred and feathered. Judge Al Bennett had the fight even at 114-114, Judge: Hilton Whitaker III had it115-114 in favor of Williams and Judge: Donald Givens had it116-114 for Williams. .

Williams had absolutely no answer for Lara's left hand. Lara, a southpaw, almost couldn't miss. Kudos to the HBO broadcasting team of Max Kellerman, Bob Papa and Roy Jones Jr. for making it clear that Lara was the real winner of the fight. I don't expect Williams to give Lara a rematch but overall I don't think the "loss" will hurt Lara's career.

Brandon Rios vs Urbano Antillon photo courtesy of ESPN
Paul Williams vs Erislandy Lara photo courtesy of


brian said...

I missed everything...but Paul Williams-with his fights with Sergio Martinez,in mind-really looks like a serious accident about to happen..

Randy De La O said...

brian, you can see the complete fight (Rios v Antillon) Here:

ScottG said...

I watched the Paul williams fight live last weekend. I listened as the comentators actually expressed fear for William's safety at he took a lot of big left hands from Lara. Now it's easy to fall into what the comentators were saying that night but as usual they were a clueless bag of hot air. Let's get right to the point. Lara won that fight and williams although he got the decision lost period. But I didn't have it as a totally one sided affair as they did either. I think that moron Merchant had it 10 rounds to 2 for Lara. I had Lara winning it convincingly with a confortable 3 point margin 117-114 But 118-110 was as lame as 115-114 for Williams. I never had those thoughts that williams life was in danger like they were professing and irresponsible comentary like that may have tainted the viewers feel for the fight.

Randy De La O said...

Scott, like you I never thought Williams's life was in serious jeopardy except that over one's carer an accumulation of punches can damage the brain but they were referring to "immediate" danger, which I never got a sense of, though I did think the overall fight was dominated by Lara.

That being said, Williams seems to be on a downward slide but maybe he'll rebound, who knows. I think the knockout by Sergio Martinez caused some damage.

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