Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez proved on Saturday that he is nonetheless among the best fighters on the earth, however extra importantly, that age is not slowing him down.
His excellent efficiency en path to a unanimous victory over Julio Cesar Martinez was the newest spectacular outing of their Corridor of Fame crammed profession. Gonzalez could also be heading to a rescheduled third match with Juan Francisco Estrada, however Martinez’s future is much less clear after the form of career-altering blows.
Within the co-main occasion, Mauricio Lara continued to construct momentum with a wild knockout of Emilio Sanchez within the third spherical of a championship. At this level, Lara merely deserves a title on her subsequent outing and it might be unfair if that did not come true.
On Friday night time, Jose Ramirez reminded the boxing world that he was nonetheless a 140-pound participant when he took a unanimous victory over Jose Pedraza. With Josh Taylor poised to surrender his 4 middleweight titles to maneuver up in heavyweight, Ramirez is nicely positioned to turn into a two-time champion in his subsequent battle. However in opposition to whom is he combating?
Let’s reply this query and extra after a deadly weekend in boxing:
“Chocolatito” is elusive
Gonzalez was left useless as a first-class fighter after being ousted by Srisaket Sur Rungesai in 2017. For the reason that loss, he has racked up victories over Cal Yafay and now Martinez to match a controversial defeat by Estrada final March. His return is likely one of the most spectacular performances in latest reminiscence.
Nicaragua’s Gonzalez and Mexico’s Estrada had been because of meet for a 3rd time on Saturday, however the battle was known as off after Estrada examined constructive for the coronavirus. Martinez had an opportunity to derail Estrada’s match, however after one other nice exhibiting from “Chocolatito”, the trio is extra pressing than ever.
Provided that they’ve already closed a deal for the match, it might be shocking if it isn’t rescheduled later in 2022. Nor would it not be shocking if Gonzalez scores one other victory over Estrada, who’s eighth in ESPN. pound boxer;
“Everybody is aware of that the final battle I had with Gallo Estrada, I received it,” Gonzalez mentioned.
His efficiency in opposition to Martinez left the judges unsuspecting as he punished the Mexican from begin to end with wonderful formations from seemingly each angle. The higher hooks and the left hooks with the fitting hand had been repeatedly blended with the physique. Martinez by no means had a solution for what amounted to an incompatibility.
As his thirty fifth birthday approaches, Chocolatito nonetheless has loads to supply. He has already received titles in three weight courses and loved an extended reign as a identified pound-for-pound king. Maybe he will likely be chasing a title within the fourth weight class. Gonzalez has expressed curiosity in a 118-pound weight class match, a Naoya Inoue-themed weight class, however this additionally options future Nonito Donner Corridor of Fame.
However earlier than Gonzalez even considers a kind of daring matches, he should keep at £115 and settle unfinished enterprise with Estrada after which Rongvesai.
Martinez belongs to 112 kilos
Martinez was obese on Friday at 116.4 kilos, however after Gonzalez fully outlasted him in a battle weighing down 115 kilos, it is clear his future continues to be at 112 kilos.
“He seemed so younger, he appeared so inexperienced,” promoter Eddie Hearn mentioned. “It’ll return to the load of the fly.”
Martinez delivered the motion in batches on Saturday, recruiting the strawmakers from distance and daring Gonzalez to hit him on the chin and fingers at his waist, however he by no means threatened to win the battle. Measurement could have performed an element, however Gonzalez is solely superb too.
At 112 kilos, the place Martinez was the champ and ranked #1 by ESPN, he will not need to face anybody who comes near Gonzalez greatness. For years, flyweight champion Sunny Edwards has lobbied for a bout with Martinez, and that showdown continues to be viable as soon as Martinez rebuilds his confidence. The battle presents a beautiful duel of types. Whereas Martinez assaults with reckless recklessness, Edwards confuses with crafty and persistence on the surface.
There’s a little bit of historical past, too. Martinez fought Sunny’s older brother, Charlie Edwards in a title battle in August 2019. Martinez severely injured Edwards within the third spherical earlier than the England participant injured his knee. Whereas kneeling, Martinez threw a punch that he left on the physique. The match was initially dominated within the third spherical of KO, and the match was later overturned into no contest because of foul.
Three years later, a gathering between Martinez and Edwards’ youthful brother, Sunny, would set the supremacy at 112 kilos.
Lara’s shot on the cusp of a title
Mauricio Lara rings the bell with an unimaginable punch as he rings Emilio Sanchez.
Lara, a 10-1 loser, was unknown when he entered the ring in opposition to Josh Warrington this previous February, however introduced his arrival with a ninth-round victory by stopping. The win ought to have made Lara a champion, however Warrington breached his belt earlier than the match. After a rematch in September ended within the second spherical and not using a contest because of a head-on collision that left Lara with a disgusting wound to his left eye, he returned Saturday with one other glowing efficiency.
Lara, 22, knocked down Emilio Sanchez within the first spherical, however bumped into critical hassle within the third after a wave from Sanchez. Nevertheless, Lara, got here again once more and scored a brutal knockout together with her right-handed Hell that landed one second earlier than the bell.
The violent nature of the fight was thrilling, and the knockout punch would certainly land memorable reels, however Lara is extra than simply an motion fighter. Ranked second by ESPN at 126 kilos, Lara was lengthy overdue in her featherweight title push.
The bout with fellow Mexican fighter Emmanuel Navarrete, the defending champion, will likely be a must-see match between ESPN’s largest featherweights. A title battle between Lara and Mark Magcio, who upset Gary Russell Jr. in January, can even be extremely anticipated for the motion that can outcome.
Then there’s Leo Santa Cruz, who stays the featherweight champion and might return to 126 kilos. One other viable choice: the winner of the Saturday match between Lee Wooden and Michael Conlan.
Victory opens alternatives for Ramirez to turn into a two-time champion
Jose Ramirez delivered the form of dependable efficiency and consistency that followers are used to seeing from the previous champ. In his first battle since dropping his titles to Josh Taylor in Could, Ramirez, 29, did not do something out of the peculiar within the ring, however his hands-on type was as soon as once more sufficient to safe the win over a troublesome opponent.
Ramirez by no means stops shifting ahead, even when he’s blocked. That is his type. That technique served him nicely and Friday’s unanimous resolution victory over Jose Pedraza lined up Ramirez nicely for an opportunity to turn into a two-time champion.
Taylor was fortunate to flee together with his titles final weekend in a battle with Jack Caterall and after the controversial win, Taylor revealed his plans to marketing campaign at 147 kilos going ahead, which means he will likely be giving up these 4 belts, making them out there to the highest contenders within the junior class. center weight.
Ramirez is certain to make a kind of possibilities, and there are many fascinating choices for his opponent.
Jose Zepeda, who dropped Ramirez’s disputed resolution in February 2019, is the primary contender for WBC whereas Ramirez completed second.
However there are many different potential choices for Ramirez. Teofimo Lopez Jr., who misplaced his 135-pound championship in November to George Camposos Jr., and as much as 140 kilos going ahead, may meet Arnold Barbosa in his welterweight debut. After that, it is perhaps simple to get a battle in opposition to Ramirez as each of them are a number of the finest fighters.
Regis Prograis has at all times known as for a battle with Ramirez. Prograis returns on March 19 in opposition to Tyrone McKenna, and the anticipated win may result in a future match with Ramirez. However essentially the most compelling choice ever for Ramirez is perhaps a showdown in opposition to Subriel Matias, a cumbersome fighter with devastating energy – 18 KOs in 18 wins.
No matter comes subsequent, Friday’s comeback was a reminder that Ramirez at all times performs nicely however hardly ever stuns. In a possible title battle with any of the above fighters, Ramirez will in all probability be higher subsequent time round.