Latest posts by Diego Morilla (see all)
Our resident boxing writer Diego Morilla serves up a full weekend wrap-up of the most relevant boxing events in the worldwide scene. Every fight that matters is right here, in one place, and at one click away. Follow Morilla on Twitter at @MorillaBoxing
Inglewood, Calif., Saturday, May 16
Gennady Golovkin TKO 6 Willie Monroe Jr., WBA middleweight title
A contender turned into champion heads into pound-for-pound territory with all-time greatness in his mind. That’s how good Golovkin (33-0, 30 KO) really is. Already owning one of the best stoppage percentages in the history of the division, and fast approaching one of boxing’s most sacred records such as Wilfredo Gomez’s 14 straight stoppage title defenses, the Kazakh terror is on a rampage to take over boxing’s elite division and dominate it for years to come. And he is doing it one opponent at a time, in demolishing fashion. That’s exactly what he did against Monroe Jr. (19-2, 6 KO), a fighter with boxing in his blood (closely related to Marvin Hagler conqueror “The Worm” Monroe) with a solid resume and a physique to match. But it was all for naught. Golovkin was too crafty, too solid in his stance, too powerful and too motivated to be denied, and he simply tore through Monroe with punishing blows from the beginning, dropping him twice in the second round and putting him on the brink of a stoppage. Monroe may have even won the fourth round with a spirited effort, but Golovkin was simply putting rounds in the bank, and he found his way to Monroe’s head with a terrific left hook that sent the Philadelphia fighter down for what looked like a 10 count. Referee Jack Reiss questioned his willingness to continue, and Monroe appeared inclined to call it a night. The end came barely a minute into the sixth round, and a new milestone in the career of one of today’s most exciting fighters was set. Can’t wait to see him again.
The winner goes on to: It’s hard to envision Golovkin going anywhere other than directly towards stardom. His two main roadblocks are Canelo Alvarez and Miguel Cotto, but I wouldn’t expect him to fight either of them until 2016 at least.
Roman Gonzalez TKO 2 Edgar Sosa, WBC flyweight title
His talents were already known to the boxing connoisseurs, but now he is out in the mainstream and there is no turning back. Nicaragua’s “Chocolatito” Gonzalez (43-0, 37 KO), former protégé of his fellow three-division titlist and personal national hero, the legendary Alexis Arguello, is one of the most talented fighters in the world in any division, and he made his case for further acknowledgement as such with a merciless demolition of a former champion with 10 defenses under his belt. Sosa (51-8, 30 KO) was barely able to withstand the fury unleashed by Gonzalez from the get-go, finding himself under a barrage of blows just as the bell was still ringing in the air. Early in the second round, Sosa visited the canvas twice under Gonzalez’s sustained attack, and he got up both times determined to make it through the round. But even that modest goal would prove unattainable for him, as Gonzalez simply chased him down and hurt him with a terrific two-fisted attack to force the stoppage towards the end of the round. Gonzalez’s win was almost preordained, but a terrific performance would have meant that we would see him again on HBO soon. Consider that goal fulfilled, and then some. Get ready to increase your “chocolatito” intake significantly in the years to come.
The winner goes on to: Fortunately, Gonzalez has plenty of opposition in the 112-ish neighborhood to stay busy and look great for a while. A unification bout of any kind should definitely be on his plans.
San Luis Potosi, Mexico, Saturday, May 16
Eden Sonsona TKO 2 Adrian Estrella, junior lightweights
Big upset loss for a fighter with a bright future. Estrella (22-1, 20 KO) was a budding star in more ways than what his surname already suggested, shining brighter and brighter in each outing and proving to be one of the fastest-rising Mexican contenders out there. But all it took was a single left hand by the southpaw Sonsona (34-6, 12 KO) to end Estrella’s stellar unbeaten streak swiftly and painfully. Estrella did beat the count, but collapsed in his corner as the referee was finishing the count and was called out very early in the second round. Huge setback for a fighter who may still have a lot of value left in him if he can recover properly.
Durban, South Africa, Saturday, May 16
Ilunga Makabu TKO 11 Thabiso Mchunu, cruiserweights
A tough, hard-fought, dirty and yet exciting battle between two brawlers. Mchunu (19-1, 18 KO) was the unbeaten local KO artist with everything going for him in this bout, but somehow he managed to squander his many advantages by engaging his fellow southpaw Makabu (17-2, 11 KO) late in the fight when he had already built up a solid advantage with his more polished boxing skills. Already ahead in the scorecards, Mchunu got careless and began to find himself more open to Makabu’s relentless attack until a single left uppercut found his way to his chin and flattened for the entire count midway through the 11th round. Heartbreaking loss for Mchunu, who was slated for bigger and better things before suffering this setback.
Phoenix, Ariz., Friday, May 15
Jose Benavidez Jr. TKO 12 Jorge Paez Jr., WBA interim junior welterweight title
Apparently, you can’t have a weekend of boxing without an interim WBA title at stake. This time, it was the turn of Benavidez, Jr. (23-0, 16 KO), who stayed unbeaten with a win over the always tough Paez Jr. (38-6-2, 23 KO), son of the legendary and extravagant Mexican multi-titlist of the same name. Paez visited the canvas once in the third round and twice more in the 12th to force a stoppage.
Antonio Orozco UD 10 Emanuel Taylor, junior welterweights
Orozco (22-0, 15 KO) earned one of the most significant wins of his career so far against a tough journeyman in Taylor (18-4, 12 KO). Orozco dominated both ends of the bout, starting out with a bang and finishing strongly to earn a unanimous nod with scores of 96-94 (twice) and 98-92.
Hartford, Connecticut, Friday May 15
Reynaldo Ojeda UD 10 Monty Meza-Clay, lightweights
Terrific win for Ojeda (17-0, 9 KO) in a do-or-die crossroads bout for the young unbeaten contender. Facing the biggest challenge in his career against a talented but significantly smaller proven contender in Meza-Clay (36-5, 22 KO), Ojeda came through with a dominant effort to earn scorecards of 99-91 (twice) and 98-92 to keep his immaculate record intact.
Luis Rosa TKO 5 Jonathan Perez, junior featherweights
Rosa (20-0, 10 KO) stayed unbeaten with a solid stoppage against a proven veteran in Colombia’s Perez (33-11, 27 KO). Rosa was dominating the fight when he lost a point in the fourth round for a foul, but came back strong in the fifth to cap a terrific effort with a barrage of blows to force the stoppage towards the end of the round.