Boxing

Rafael Marquez vs. Israel Vazquez: Preview, Analysis, & Prediction

rafael marquez02.08.07 - By Alan Kindred: Want to see a good fight? In a rematch of their exciting slugfest fought five months ago, WBC Super bantamweight champion Rafael Marquez (37-3, 33 KOs) vs. will take on the knockout artist Israel Vazquez (41-4, 30 KOs) at the Dodge Arena, in Hildago, Texas. Exciting fights are what the sport of boxing needs.

Last March, Marquez-Vazquez gave an effort which can considered as one of the best boxing fights of the year, if not the best. This Saturday night they are going to war again. They both have aggressive come forward styles with excellent power for there weight class. Pound for pound, they are among the hardest punchers in the sport. Also to be considered is the fact that of their combined seven losses, six were by stoppage.

I believe this recipe adds up to another action packed fight with both fighters getting stunned regularly with slim chances of it going to the scorecards. Personally, I thought the first fight was very exciting - while it lasted - until Vazquez suffered a a broken nose, which hampered his ability to breath, causing his corner to eventually thrown in the towel. Some may think he pulled a "No Mas," but he hadn't previously shown a history of this behavior. Plus, by signing quickly for the revenge rematch, Vazquez shows he does want to avenge this loss. So now let us take a look at each of these boxing fighters in more depth.

Bio's

We will start with the Champion Rafael Marquez 37-3 (33), who turned pro in September of 1995. One of the most amazing things about Rafael Marquez is that he took on former world champion Victor Rabanales in his first fight. Rabanales stopped young Rafael in the 8th round. Rabanales was still a contender and would go on to fight for another world title nearly two years later. Talk about baptism by fire. The loss would not discourage Rafael, though, as he made it apparent early in his career he had the power but only was lacking the toughness to absorb what he could dish out. This chin problem was high-lighted in knockout defeats to Francisco Mateos, who won an interim NABF title once, and to world title challenger Genaro Garcia, the last fighter to defeat Rafael, back in November of 2000.

So with a record of 21-3 (20), Rafael started the run that lead him to the position he no holds today the true Jr Featherweight/Super Bantamweight 122 lb World Champion. He first burst onto the scene giving future hall of famer Mark "too sharp" Johnson all he could handle in a close fight, in which Johnson had points deducted allowing Rafael to win a close decision. In the rematch, however, Rafael showed his first glimpse of greatness stopping Johnson in the 8th.

Then winning the Bantamweight crown from long reigning and undefeated Tim Austin was another feather in his cap as his string of wins kept rolling as well fans could see Rafael evolving his style ever so slowly from relentless brawler to a more refined boxer/puncher style. He also was the first to stop former world champion Mauricio Pastrana in impressive fashion. That lead up to his first fight with Israel Vazquez and we know what happened there. What we don't know yet is what is going to happen in their rematch.

Israel Vazquez 41-4 (30) is a very exciting, former true 122 World Champion who in my opinion hasn't gotten enough exposure considering he has had many exciting fights, just not many televised. One thing to consider is he knocked out a guy being Larios in 1 round that took Manny Pacquiao the distance. It was evident early in in Vazquez career also that he had good power mowing over nondescripts until he was stopped by one in Ulises Flores. A minor setback as he continued his march KOing the aforementioned Larios in 1 round 3 fights after his first loss.

He would lose a controversial decision to Marcos Lincona for a regional WBO title in 1999 before rattling off 12 strait wins leading up to a rematch with Larios in which he lost his 3rd bout by 12 round TKO. He would win a portion of the 122 lb title from Jose Luis Valbuena defending it twice including a very nice win over the undefeated Art Simonyan before the rubber match and title unification fight against once again Oscar Larios. Vazquez would drop Larios in the first leading to a 3rd round stoppage on cuts. Vazquez was now the 122 lb World Champion.

he continued with more defenses including a brilliant win over tough Jhonny Gonzalez. Until that is he ran into Rafael Marquez...He now wants his world championship back.

Styles make fights

With these come ahead power punchers I see it as a can't miss fight. While Larios is an inch taller Marquez actually has a slight reach advantage from fingertip to fingertip. Reach however I don't expect to play much of a factor as I expect inside bomb trading. I do see at times that Marquez could utilize his strait punches from the outside and that might be a smart game plan as Vazquez is the more wild of two. I think the outside game will be far and few between in this fight as these two crave the war with each other. I hope it exceeds the first fight in excitement. It is a hard fight to call and I don't recommend making a bet on this one because we are dealing with two very explosive punchers. Age shouldn't be a huge factor even though Marquez is 32 vs Vazquez 29 because I think Vazquez has more on the odometer meaning he's been in the tougher more grueling fights. Still a tough fight to call.

Prediction

I'm 99% sure its going to end in a KO and I do have a pick, but with punchers like these two, I may have to eat crow. However, I'm going to go with another mid-rounds stoppage victory in a great fight for Rafael Marquez...KO5...Israel Vazquez

I see it like this:

Round 1

A determined Vazquez comes out early storming power punches catching Marquez, who was seeming to get a feeling out round ,a little off guard hurting Marquez badly knocking him into the ropes flailing hooks and uppercuts to the body and head until Marquez goes down struggling to get up very glassy eyed, it looks for a minute as if it is over in round 1 but Marquez makes it up at the count of 9 and the referee lets it go on with about a minute to go. Marquez gets on his bicycle like never before actually landing a few hard jabs to end the round.10-8 Vazquez

Round 2

Marquez comes out moving but only slightly, working angles moving left and right trying land jabs and strait rights while Vazquez continues to pursue missing many but still landing the more telling blows a clubbing right hook to the temple of Marquez has him reeling near the bell. 10-9 Vazquez

Round 3

Vazquez, still in kill mode, jumps out at the start of the round with a strong 1-2 followed by a leaping left hook, which catches Marquez flush putting him down for the second time. He gets up at the count of five, looking only slightly dazed not at all like the first round where his eyes rolled back. Referee counts to 8 and lets it go Vazquez continues with his assault pushing Marquez back into a neutral corner throwing hooks nailing Marquez in the shoulders and arms, mostly, until Marquez uncorks a beauty of a ducking straight right to the jaw that pulverizes Vazquez head. No one thinks he will get up but yet he does at a count of seven...and he fell face first. So now both men hurt stand in the center ring toeing the line begin trading bombs on the inside both men have their knees buckling at the bell. Round of the Year 10-10

Round 4

Vazquez starts slower and more careful, trying to jab and setup power shots while Marquez again employs angles and straight punches and is definitely getting the better of it snapping Vazquez head back with the jab and cross and the left hook to the body is being used while Vazquez has little in return that is effective. Noticeable swelling on Vazquez right eye is apparent. 10-9 Marquez

Round 5

Vazquez seems fresher to start the 5th round going back to an aggressive swarming attack while Marquez side steps to his left jabbing. After a wide overhand right by Vazquez that is evaded by Marquez, Rafael Marquez side steps and delivers a left hook of legend, causing Vazquez' mouth piece to fly out into the 5th row. Vazquez then goes down in a motionless heap. The referee calls it off immediately. Winner by spectacular Knockout at 1:14 of round and still Champion Rafael Marquez


R.I.P. Chico

Article posted on 03.08.2007



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