What better way to come back from your first pro defeat than to return with an impressive first-round KO victory? This is just what former super-bantamweight champ Guillermo Rigondeaux picked up last night in crushing Giovanni Delgado in his first fight back since quitting on his stool after six hugely disappointing rounds against Vasyl Lomachenko in December of 2017.
The 38 year old Cuban southpaw cracked the over-matched Mexican with a big left hand right at the end of the opening session, the blow landing a second or so before the bell sounded to end the round. Delgado was given a count but he failed to rise before the count of ten. Rigondeaux is now 18-1(12). Delgado falls to 16-9(9).
Back down to 122 pounds, where he is clearly more comfortable, Rigondeaux says he feels as though he was never away and that he will fight again soon, perhaps in a couple of months. “El Chacal” also says he is the “King of 122 pounds” and that he will be champion again soon.
“This is my division. This is my time,” a victorious Rigondeaux said after last night’s quick win (as picked up by Boxing News And Views). “I am the king of one hundred and twenty-two pounds. I felt 100 hundred percent tonight. Delgado is a good fighter. I take my hat off to him and his team. I came prepared and I am ready to face people that are undefeated. Whoever has a belt – I am taking it. You can expect me back in less than two months for my next fight.”
In truth, Rigondeaux beat a relatively “easy” or “safe” foe in Delgado, but after so long out he was perhaps entitled. Can Rigondeaux regain at least a portion of the 122 pound crown? At age 38 time is not on his side, but judging from what little was saw last night Rigondeaux has kept himself in great shape. He was more aggressive than he has been in the past and last night he looked powerful (again, he didn’t have too much to beat).
The current champs at 122 are Rey Vargas (WBC champ), Emanuel Navarrete (WBO champ), Daniel Roman (WBA champ) and TJ Doheny (IBF champ). As advanced as he is in years, and despite what happened in the Lomachenko fight, it’s fair to say Rigondeaux would have a great shot at beating either of these champions. Let’s see if Rigondeaux makes the quick return he spoke of, and if he is as aggressive, and as exciting, as he was last night.