Sunday, December 16, 2012

Leo Santa Cruz, Amir Khan and Nonito Donaire All Win Big

By Randy De La O

Seemed like old times yesterday. I came home from work and watched a fight on CBS. When was the last time we saw a fight on free TV? Relatively free anyways, we still have to pay for cable but it still brought back memories of 70's and early 80's when both CBS' Sports Spectacular, and ABC 's Wide World of Sports, regularly aired big name fights on the weekend. The fights were held at the Los Angeles Sports Arena. I can't remember the last fight held there.

Photos: Big Joe Miranda

Leo Santa Cruz successfully defended his IBF Bantamweight belt against Albert Guevera, an unheralded and unknown fighter from Mexico. Santa Cruz found himself in a tougher than expected fight with Guevera, who showed a lot of smarts and moxie in this fight. He made a good showing against the champ but ultimately lost a 12 round unanimous decision. Guevera looks to have  lots of potential and showed a big heart. We'll be seeing him again.

Photos: Big Joe Miranda

Later that evening, at the same venue,  but airing on Showtime, Amir Khan and local fighter Carlos Molina, fighting for the vacant WBC Silver Light Welterweight title, fought up to the 10th round of a scheduled 12 rounder. The fight was correctly stopped by Molina's corner, after their fighter had taken a sound beating from Khan.  Khan,  trying to reposition  himself as  viable force  in boxing, took another step in that direction. His chin however remained untested in last night's fight. A game Carlos Molina showed courage in his fight but, at least in this stage of his career, he was over matched and taken to school in this fight.. A fighter can learn from a loss like this and grow or he can let it get to him and regress. It's up to him.

Photos: Chris Farina / Top Rank

Over on HBO, the real main event of the evening, was Nonito Donaire vs Jorge Arce, fighting at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. Donaire was defending his WBO Super bantamweight title. Donaire was the favored going onto this fight, and rightly so. The surprise (for me at least) was not that he won but the ease in which he did so. Donaire pretty much had his way with the always game Arce, knocking him down with a right hand in the second round and then stopping him in the third round with a sensational left hook. Expect bigger and better things from Donaire in 2013. He's the real thing. It was a good day for boxing yesterday.

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