Boxing

Darchinyan Destroys Mijares - Fans, Not Writers Correct This Time

Cristian MijaresBy Paul Strauss: Vic Darchinyan used his most unusual style, speed and punching power to completely dominate and destroy Cristian Mijares. Most boxing writers, after witnessing Darchinyan's destruction at the hands of Nonito Donaire, felt that the little Raging Bull had too many weaknesses and vulnerabilities to come away with a win over such a slick technician as Mijares. After all, didn't Mijares give the similarly aggressive Jorge Arce a boxing lesson!

The "Little Creeper" took umbrage with all of the criticism, and said the boxing writers didn't appreciate his cleverness and skills. He claimed Mijares would be damaged, and would need a lot of time to recover after he was done with him. Apparently his fans believed in him, because prior to the fight, the pollsters said the majority of fans (not writers) felt the KO artist was going to once again be successful.

The little Armenian terror and his fans couldn't have been more right. Vic controlled the action from the opening bell, having things all his way, including scoring a knockdown toward the end of the first round. It was only the second time in Mijares' career that he had been knockdown. It was a prelude of more to come. Mijares could not establish his jab, and inexplicably leaned in. Victor seized on the opportunity, and nailed him with a left uppercut sending Mijares to the canvas with about twenty seconds left in the round.

The second round wasn't much better. Mijares almost went down again. He didn't get nailed with another uppercut, but he was taking some hard punches, some of which were to the side and back of the head. Mijares couldn't land much in the way of effective punches in return.

Darchinyan is a rough fighter, and Mijares complained about Darchinyan using his elbows But, Darchinyan doesn't do it in the usual sense. For example, most fighters accused of using their elbows will be doing it after a missed hook, purposely throwing the punch a little short so the glove passes by the head, but the elbow doesn't. However, Darchinyan manages it with long punches, when he is extended and potentially vulnerable for a counter. However, before the counter can be thrown, Darchinyan employs an almost backhand technique with the entire arm (elbow area) that throws off the opponent and most certainly hurts.

Darchinyan closed out the fourth round with another hard left. He started the fifth round with a high volume of punches, a vicious attack. One punch strayed very low, but referee Dr. Lou Moret failed to stop the action and give Mijares any time to recover. He simply tells Mijares, "That's what happens when you pull his (Darchinyan's) head down." So, there was no foul, no rest time and no knockdown. But, it proved to be a non-issue in the final result.

Finally in the sixth, Darchinyan is warned about use of the elbow. Surprisingly, Mijares' corner-man is telling him to keep attacking, and to go to the body, which would seem like a death wish against a puncher like Darchinyan. Mijares tries to oblige, but the fight is pretty much a shut-out up to this point. The seventh round proved to be a little better round for Mijares. He landed a few combinations, but was taking too many chances.

In the eighth, Mijares still wasn't throwing a jab, and continued to foolishly bend in and was getting nailed with uppercuts. The ninth opened with Darchinyan attacking at a fast hard pace. He was throwing three and four punch combinations, one of which ended with a huge left right on the button. Down went Mijares and referee Moret didn't even bother to start a count. The fight was over. The punch landed with about eight seconds to go, but the fight officially ended at the close of the round. All three judges had the fight scored identically up to that point 79-72 in favor of Darchinyan.

After the fight, Darchinyan wanted to know if the writers would now place him high on the P4P list. He said, I promised to destroy Mijares, to damage him, and I delivered. He certainly did deliver, and by using one of the most unusual styles ever seen by a champion. He creeps along, looking like some kind of bizarre cat, ready to pounce at any moment. He often uses his extended arms as range finders and invitations for his opponents to counter. But, at the first hint of a counter, he explodes with flurries of hard punches. Many times his combinations aren't the typical one-two, or one-two-three type combinations. Often times, they're multiple lefts, thrown in rapid succession. Just when the opponent thinks he's safe and possibly out of range, here comes another one, and boom the lights go out. He's a strange styled little guy, but man can he fight.

The undercard displayed the considerable skills of Andre Dirrell against the not so skilled Victor Oganov. The speed and volume of punches were so one sided that this fight was an obvious miss-match from the very beginning. Organov had no chance, even though his impressive record implied otherwise. He has no jab, no defense and lacks coordination. Dirrell had a field day.

By the third round, Dirrell had opened up a bad cut to Oganov's right eye. To make matters worse, Oganov's corner was slow to act in getting the blood flow under control. The quick ending

brought some boos and protests from the crowd, but referee Ray Corona was correct in his assessment that Oganov was hurt and had no chance. Corona said he saw Dirrell land a hard combination, which caused Organov to stutter step or stumble. Then Dirrell landed two more lefts right on the cut, which prompted Corona to jump it and mercifully stop the slaughter. The (unofficial) time was about 2:35 seconds of the sixth round. The judges had the fight scored 50-44, 50-45, and 50-45 up to that point.

Andre Dirrell, now 17-0, is impressive, but he should have been against a fighter that had no jab, no head movement, and no ability to counter. The former bronze medal winner needs to go in against someone much better than another Oganov type before his true value will be appreciated. He certainly seems capable to do just that. Let's hope it will be soon.

Article posted on 03.11.2008



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