Remember the “good old days” of 15 round fights? Back when the boxing organizations dropped the world title fight limit from 15 rounds to 12, plenty of fans, historians and active and former fighters were hugely annoyed. Those championship rounds, from 11 through 15, were part of what made boxing so great, many people argued. The championship rounds were the section of the fight that, as Angelo Dundee put it, “separated the men from the boys.”
Safety reasons were given for why fights were cut from 15 down to 12, with the tragic death of Deuk Koo Kim in November of 1982 being one of the most widely viewed tragedies in the sport. The 15 round fights were a thing of the past by 1988. Plenty of boxing folk demanded the return of traditional 15 round bouts, but no governing body was willing to budge.
Which makes the news from former IBF 154 pound champ Carlos Molina so surprising and, at the same time, interesting. Molina, who promotes his own fights under his King Carlos Promotions banner, says his November 6 fight with Juan Carlos Raygoza will indeed be scheduled for 15 rounds.
“Watching the fights from the ’80s, I always dreamed of fighting a 15 rounder,” Molina said. “I always push my body to the limit in training, so if it goes 15 rounds, I am more than ready.”
Molina, 34-11-2(12), is now fighting as a middleweight. Raygoza is 17-15(6), but he is coming off four wins on the spin.
There are, of course, plenty of questions to be asked about the 15 round fight: will the fight, scheduled for November 6 in Michoacan, Mexico, really be sanctioned as a 15 rounder by the commission? What if, heaven forbid, one of the fighters gets hurt during the final three rounds? If the fight proves to be a success, will more than 15 round bouts follow?
Fan interest promises to be quite significant here. Should 15 round fights be brought back, yes or no? It would be interesting to hear what active world champions think about this.