IBR on The Cruelest Sport


“It is Donaire’s third appearance in the open air of StubHub Center, but also a first of sorts. Promoter Top Rank—which saw a favorable resemblance to another Filipino fighter in Donaire’s explosiveness—gave Donaire top billing in his prior two appearances in Carson. But not this time. No, Gennady Golovkin headlines the HBO broadcast against the only Mexican fighter televised on a card nevertheless purposefully titled “Mexican Style.” If Donaire, 33-2 (21), seeks consolation for his demotion, he should look to the 9,000 strong in the sold out stands, to the aficionados among them who appreciate the jolt of competitiveness Donaire-Walters brings to an event that feels very much like a feverish yet foregone conclusion.”

Read Power Surge: Nonito Donaire-Nicholas Walters Preview on The Cruelest Sport.


IBR on The Cruelest Sport

cfgw“Donaire-Darchinyan II was billed as a grudge match, a rematch the public was clamouring for, which, like most promotional ballyhoo, is at best a half truth. Any fight with Darchinyan, who generates disdain for his opponents like the sun makes heat, is a grudge match. Interest in this rematch, however, was lost to the hour glass. Until being served his comeuppance by Rigondeaux, Donaire, San Leandro, California, had looked mostly dominant. Darchinyan, on the other hand, had suffered four losses since Donaire dealt him a dose of temporary amnesia in 2007.”

Read REPEATER: Nonito Donaire TKO9 Vic Darchinyan on The Cruelest Sport.

IBR on The Cruelest Sport

024“His brains still scrambled, Abner Mares stood before Showtime cameras and was asked to comment on the first defeat of his professional career, a stunning first-round TKO loss to 11-1 underdog Jhonny Gonzalez. What he offered, beyond congratulations to his friend and former sparring partner, the same man who had minutes earlier dumped him on the canvas at the StubHub Center in Carson, California, was a maxim that could have been taken out of Letters from a Stoic: “As you learn how to win you have to learn how to lose, too.” This is not entirely true: matchmaking can insulate a fighter—Gary Russell, Jr., for example—from ever having to learn the ins and outs of coming up short. But a fighter like Mares, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, had to know this moment was coming, if not against Gonzalez then against another opponent with aspirations rivalling Mares’ own. Facing the caliber of opponent Mares has since fighting Yohnny Perez to a draw in May, 2010, means inevitably taking a loss: at some point, the other guy will be the better man.”

Read CUTTING STRINGS: Jhonny Gonzalez TKO1 Abner Mares on The Cruelest Sport.