Donaire gets SD over Vazquez Jr; Chavez Jr. hammers out UD over Rubio

By Paul Strauss: Strange goings on Saturday night at The Alamodome in San Antonio, TX. Nonito "The Filipinio Flash" Donaire managed to throw more punches; throw harder punches; land punches at a greater percentage; knock down Wilfredo Vasquez, Jr. (WV2); demonstrate better ring genership and defense, and still have one judge score the fight for WV2? If that judge happened to be a baseball umpire, fans would be yelling, "What ya, blind!"

WV2 had his moments, and did a good job to survive against one of the better P4P fighters in boxing, but he did not win the fight. Donaire forced the action for much of the fight. He had WV2 in trouble more than once, and down in the ninth with a left uppercut, followed by a left hook. The only real mistake Donaire made was a silly taunt he used in the 8th round when he squatted, putting both gloved hands on his knees and beckoning WV2 to try and hit him. The fans didn't like it and boo'd.

You can also add managing distance well to the original Donaire list of good things he did Saturday night. Well, okay one more thing, his great reflexes. He can risk difficult and somewhat foolish manuevers and get away with them, because of his speed (oh, there's another one) and great reflexes. WV2 caught him with one solid right hand, but for the most part about all he could land flush were jabs. The rest of his punches were either blocked, rolled with, or pulled away from.

WV2 was often in danger when trying to get his jab going, because Donaire would time it and counter with his hard right. When WV2 tried to sneak in a right hand of his own, Donaire would fire that great left hook of his. WV2 demonstrated his own cleverness by managing to avoid getting hit on the chin with the punch, which was fortunate because even when it landed on the top left side of his head, it visibly hurt him.

There were several moments when the two would go toe to toe, both demonstrating their speed and combination punching, but just when it looked as though WV2 might be able to land something, Donaire would slide away, and get the distance back to where he wanted. From outside he would throw a big overhand right, and then follow with a punishing left to the body. The left was more of a straight punch than a hook. Donaire can do that because he trainsitions so well to the southpaw stance.

During the tenth or eleventh round, announcer Jim Lampley mentioned hearing someone in Donaire's corner say Donaire hurt his right hand. As it turned out, it was actually his left hand. In his post-fight interview with Larry Merchant, Donaire held up his left hand. The glove was off, and the bloodied guaze of his hand wrap was blood soaked. Donaire said he was experiencing quite of bit of pain, but he could more his fingers a bit. He speculated that what ever happened, happened about the fourth round. But, he kept going in spite of it.

Whan the final bell rang, two judges saw the fight as relatively one sided and scored it 117-110. Unofficial score keeper Harold Lederman scored it 117-109 (knock down and one one-sided round). The mystery then was how could the third judge score the fight 115-112 for WV2! It's a good bet he will be asked that question by many, and rightfully so.

Although Donaire fought a very good fight, he wasn't happy with his performance. He thought he should have done better, but he did offer that the injured left hand hampered him a bit, and he couldn't do all the things trainer Robert Garcia wanted him to do. He also told Larry Merchant that WV2 took his shots better than he thought he would, and that the new weight class of 122 lbs will be where he will be staying for a while. He's is no hurry to move up again to featherweight.

In the main event, Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr (JC Jr.) dominated Marco Antonio Rubio. In doing so, JC Jr. demonstrated again that he is tough and a good body puncher, especially with the left hook. He's an active fighter, with decent movement, but he doesn't use the jab much, lacks a big right hand to go with the left. Against Rubio, he was allowed to bend down and in and bull the smaller man back against the ropes where he would unleash his left hook and uppercuts.

Rubio weathered things well, and tried to retaliate, but he failed to use his jab effectively against the on coming JC jr. He did use it at a distance, but didn't drive it, and often times it fell short. His record includes 46 kayo's, but he is not a big knockout puncher, and he never had JC Jr in danger. In fact, when there were lulls in the action, it was by JC Jr's choice. At those times, JC Jr. would move out of range, and go side to side, eluding anything Rubio would try to do.

JC Jr. didn't come away unscathed though. He sustained a small abrasion to the outside corner of his right eye, and as the fight wore on, the eye swelled quite a bit. Rubio proved tough and willing, but his style was a good one for JC Jr. He was readily available and not a big counter punch threat. At times he would show off a little volume punching of his own, but he lacked the wallop of JC Jr. Also, when he was done, he would remain right in front of JC Jr for the retaliatory.blows Rubio never really tried to step around or turn JC Jr. A few times, he did try to grab behind JC Jr's lowered head and push down, but he would got warned by Referee Jose Guadalupe Garcia.

One point of interest, when announcing the tale of the tape, Rubio was described as six one and a half? He's closer to 5'10", which was clearly evident in the fight. Once again JC Jr had trouble making weight, and his fight day weight ballooned up to 181lbs. After the fight, he told Larry Merchant that he had no intention of moving up in weight? When asked who he would like to fight next, he mentioned Sergio Martinez, but admitted that he has work to do before that happens, because if they fought now, he admits Sergio would win. Refreshing. If Kelly Pavlik stays at 160lbs, he would be an interesting matchup. For Kelly it would be a good fight to get himself back in the think of things, and for JC Jr, it would be a true test against top level opposition. If Kelly's keeps his head on straight, he could really provide a test of JC Jr's chin. JC Jr's record of never having been down might be broken.

JC Jr's efforts against Rubio were rewarded with a UD. Judges had it 118-110, 116-112, and 115-113. All in all the fight provided no surprises. It was a good fight and good win for JC Jr., but it doesn't yet mean JC Jr. is ready to join the ranks of the elite fighters.

Article posted on 06.02.2012

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