Fightful Boxing Newsletter (8/17): Mayweather-McGregor Card, Glove Rulings, Terence Crawford-Julius Indongo Preview

Now that the Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor event has a full card, the attention now turns to analyzing the quality of the card, and there is plenty to talk about. However, that hasn’t happened as the latest chapter in the McGregor vs. Paulie Malignaggi saga saw the release of a couple of short videos that seem to put Malignaggi, and his claims that he was never knocked down by McGregor, in doubt.

But before we dive into the circus the August 26 fight, quite possibly the biggest junior welterweight fight in boxing history is set to take place this Saturday with Terence Crawford vs. Julius Indongo with all four world titles on the line, a first in the division’s history. We will provide a deep preview at the fight, as well as looking at the rest of the card, which is a surprisingly deep card.

Weili Zhang's Coach Responds To Rose Namajunas' Political Comments: "Humble Yourself"

Also on tap on this week’s newsletter is the 35th anniversary of former featherweight world champion Salvador Sanchez’s untimely death due to a massive car accident. Sanchez was widely regarded as one of the greatest boxers of the early 1980s, with some pundits and historians believing Sanchez could have been the greatest featherweight boxer of all time.

All this and more on this week’s edition of the Fightful Boxing Newsletter:

Fightful Boxing Newsletter (8/10) Table of Contents:

  1. Terence Crawford vs. Julius Indongo (Page 2)
  2. The Latest in Mayweather vs. McGregor (Page 3)
  3. Results from the world of boxing (Page 4)
  4. Official Fightful Rankings (Page 5-6)
  5. Other news in boxing (Page 7)
  6. Shane Mosley Retires (Page 8)
  7. Fightful Boxing Retrospective: 35th Anniversary of Salvador Sanchez’s Death (Page 9)

Terence Crawford vs. Julius Indongo Preview

Before the madness that is Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor finally concludes on August 26, August 19 will feature a once-in-a-lifetime type of matchup at 140 pounds: a unification fight where all four major world titles are on the line. Unified chamions Terence Crawford and Julius Indongo will meet on ESPN to decide who will be the undisputed junior middleweight world champion.

What is at stake:

All the 140-pound world titles, which is about the highest stakes possible in this sport. Never in the history of boxing has all four major world titles (WBA, WBC, IBF and WBA) been on the line at once in the junior welterweight division.

Crawford isn’t just going for all the titles in this fight. He’s looking to gain massive momentum ahead of a possible move up in weight to welterweight, where Crawford can many big time fights and challenge for more world titles.

Should Crawford defeat Indongo, it’s entirely possible that Crawford could call it quits as there really is not much else for him at the 140-pound division. He’s beaten Viktor Postol, he’s defeated Felix Diaz in dominant fashion and he beat the other unified champion. There’s a possibility that Crawford could fight Mikey Garcia should he move up in weight and abandon the lightweight division, but as previously reported, it’s hard to see either side leave their respective fight network (ESPN for Crawford, Showtime for Garcia) to take the fight.

But this fight is also the next test in ESPN’s experiment to be the premier boxing network with their partnership with Top Rank. The partnership’s first test, Manny Pacquiao vs. Jeff Horn, was a resounding success in the ratings, but the second fight, Vasyl Lomachenko vs. Miguel Marriaga, was a disaster that did even worse viewership than most HBO-televised cards, which has about a third of ESPN’s subscribers.

It’s hard to predict what viewership will be like, but somewhere along the lines of 2 million viewers and above would be a great success for ESPN. The viewership is the only real measure of success for this fight, as live gates is expected to be what it is for a Terence Crawford fight in Omaha, Nebraska, perhaps a little higher since this is such a historic fight.

Indongo is the underdog in this encounter, and Indongo is in a weird position as the underdog. Not many people think Indongo can beat Crawford in this fight, despite the size and reach advantage, but no one thinks he’ll get blown out by Crawford if the fight were to go to the scorecards. This is a really solid matchup for sure, but something about the fight is not giving off the impression that this will be a fight to be remembered decades from now like in prior instances where similarly historic fights were made.

The card and where to watch:

As far as the entire card is concerned, top to bottom, this is one of the better cards in all of 2017, which is definitely a feat in and of itself given how many great boxing cards there has been already this year. Most of the fights have at least one name that hardcore boxing fans can recognize

Only the top two fights will be shown on ESPN, but the full card will be streamed online at ESPN's online streaming service. Below is the full card.

  • Terence Crawford vs. Julius Indongo for Crawford's WBO/WBC and Indongo's IBF/WBA junior welterweight titles
  • Oleksandr Gvozdyk vs. Craig Baker: light heavyweight bout
  • Shakur Stevenson vs. David Paz: featherweight bout
  • Mike Alvarado vs. Sidney De Siqueira: welterweight bout
  • Bryan Jennings vs. Daniel Martz: heavyweight bout
  • Dillian Whyte vs. Malcolm Tann: heavyweight bout
  • Mike Reed vs. Rob Frankel: junior welterweight bout
  • Steve Nelson vs. Cesar Ruiz: light heavyweight bout
  • Kevin Ventura vs. Baltazar Ramirez: junior lightweight bout

Tale of the Tape:

Terence Crawford:

Record: 31-0 (22 KO)

Height: 5’8”

Reach: 70”

Notable Wins: Hank Lundy, Thomas Dulorme, Viktor Postol, John Lomina Jr., Felix Diaz

Julius Indongo:

Record: 22-0 (11 KO)

Height: 5’10”

Reach: 71.5”

Notable Wins: Eduard Troyanovski, Ricky Burns

Betting odds (From Bovada):

Terence Crawford: -2250 (Favorite)

Julius Indongo: +950 (Underdog)

Latest on Mayweather vs. McGregor: The Malignaggi video and the NSAC ruling

After weeks of back and forth arguing, Floyd Mayweather vs. Conor McGregor will indeed fight using 8-ounce gloves after all.

The Nevada State Athletic Commission ultimately ruled in a meeting 10 days before the fight that the two fighters are approved to compete using 8-ounce gloves and not the 10-ounce gloves that the commission usually forces boxers competing at 154 pounds and above.

Also in that meeting, the NSAC has appointed Robert Byrd as the official referee for the fight as well as add Dave Moretti, Burt Clements and Guido Cavalerri as the official judges for the fight.

The issue of the glove size started all the way back during the world press tour in mid-July when McGregor made a comment possibly alluding to Mayweather demanding McGregor wear a certain type of boxing glove for their fight.

Weeks after the press tour, Mayweather posted on social media saying that the two will fight using 8-ounce gloves, which the commission initially ruled out because 8-ounce gloves are only for fights at 147 pounds and below. Mayweather vs. McGregor will be contested at 154 pounds, which requires the fighters to wear 10-ounce gloves.

NSAC executive director Bob Bennett said on August 10 that the commission had a change of hearts of sorts and that the NSAC would rule on the glove size at the August 16 meeting.

During the meeting, all commission members deliberated for about 25 minutes, making their own personal comments as to whether or not the fight should have 8-ounce gloves or not. All five members unanimously voted in favor of the rule exception, but when they all had a turn to speak, they weren’t necessarily thrilled to make the exception. Some of the highlights of that discussion period included one member commenting that rules do change and evolve with time, as if the commission needed to convince itself they were doing the right thing.

McGregor has been training at around 160 pounds, which is about as good an indication as any that the UFC champion will make weight the night before the fight at the weigh-ins.

One thing that I thought was interesting was when the commission announced that the gloves being used in training and in the fight will be relinquished to the NSAC for further study. This is odd as a demand like this is uncommon and the commission failed to specify the reasoning for the ruling.

Even with the ruling and the period where the commission members spoke their minds on the matter, they never really explained any reasoning or justification for the change in glove size, even after a day passed since Dr. Raymond Monsell, chairman of the board of directors of the Association of Ringside Physicians, wrote a letter to the NSAC strongly advising against changing the glove size, ‘unless there is a scientific evidence to support the view that such a change might improve the safety of this bout.’ Monsell is worried that the ruling would set a precedent for future situations and it is a legitimate concern. Perhaps this unknown study the commission is conducting after the fight could lead to a potential amendment in the rule and allowing future junior middleweight bouts to fight using 8-ounce gloves and have the middleweight be the minimum weight class to have to use 10-ounce gloves. At this point, it’s still too early to tell what the commission has planned.

According to commission member Skip Avansino, the rule for 10-ounce gloves went into effect around 2006. The rule was implemented based on the recommendations of an advisory committee. At the time, the committee did admit the recommendations were not based on any scientific fact and encouraged the NSAC to fund a study on the matter. With the way head trauma has been so heavily studied, it's likely that the study from 2006 and the potential study the NSAC will conduct after Mayweather vs. McGregor may be linked in some manner regarding head trauma and concussion protocol.

For as much as the commission preached fighter safety at times during the meeting and the members speaking so awkwardly about the matter, the NSAC stood to lose a bit of their reputation from approving the decision. The commission openly said they were being planned and metaphorically taken for a ride by this matter, with even chairman Anthony Marnell admitting the NSAC was used as a "pawn" by both camps. Dana White said that glove size was never an issue during fight negotiations and so the matter kind of went unnoticed until Mayweather made that social media announcement.

The boxing card itself, as expected, is littered with Mayweather Promotions fighters and as far as pay-per-view boxing cards are concerned, this is actually a decent lineup. Mind you, this isn’t the best pay-per-view card, but, given the circumstances and the type of fighters that were expected to compete, this may have been the best possible card.

Although one thing I don’t see a lot of coverage is certainly the timing of the cards. As previously reported by myself and various other boxing reporters, Gervonta Davis was likely going to be fighting Roman “Rocky” Martinez in the co-main event with Davis’ IBF junior lightweight title on the line. That ended up not being the case as it is Francisco Fonseca fighting Davis for the title instead.

Looking at when the junior lightweight title fight was announced, there is a chance, and I would wager on this being the case, that Showtime and Mayweather Promotions had penciled their plans for what the August 26 card looked like, but most of the card had not been approved yet by the commission and governing bodies involved.

Take a look at the Nathan Cleverly vs. Badou Jack WBA “regular” light heavyweight fight that will also be on the pay-per-view card. As far back as late July Stephen Espinoza stated on record, and I was present when he said this, that the full card was already done. The reason why it wasn’t announced was in late July that Showtime didn’t want to take attention away from the July 29 fight between Adrien Broner and Mikey Garcia.

The issue with Espinoza’s claim is that, if he is to be believed, then Cleverly vs. Jack was already official, but the governing body had said weeks prior that Cleverly was to defend his title against mandatory challenger Dmitry Bivol. Days after the July 29 non-announcement, Cleverly’s promoter Eddie Hearn had said that he was still trying to negotiate a step-aside deal so that Cleverly would fight Jack on August 26.

If Hearn had been trying to negotiate a deal after July 29, then there was no way that the full card was already done and it’s official. In the time between the Brooklyn leg of the Mayweather vs. McGregor press tour, which is when the card was still not finalized, and July 29, there was some shuffling around for the card.

Like a wrestling promoter taking out a pencil and erasing someone’s name on a match card days before the show and making last minute changes, Espinoza and Mayweather Promotions called an audible on the co-main event. It’s hard for the switch of Martinez being in the co-main event to Fonseca to be a coincidence, given the timing, or that Fonseca was the plan all along.

On July 29, Davis held a press conference that was essentially a waste of time as the only thing people cared about was who he was facing. No opponent was announced at that presser, but the switch to Fonseca being the opponent happened on that night with Tevin Farmer’s hand injury that came as a result of a gunshot wound. Farmer and Fonseca were ordered to fight in an eliminator to become the mandatory challenger to Davis’ title prior to July 29.

With Farmer out of the running for the title eliminator in the immediate future, Davis’ representatives took to the IBF and try to get Fonseca as Davis’ next opponent. Fonseca became an unofficial defacto mandatory challenger on July 29.

The switch from Martinez to Farmer is a smart move on the part of Davis’ representatives. Governing bodies like it when their champions fight ranked opponents that the governing body would likely order the champion to fight. Fighting Fonseca gives Davis leeway in the future should Davis decide to forgo a mandatory challenge and go for a unification fight in the future.

It’s still way too early in Davis’ career to have a unification fight, but building experience by fighting the IBF’s ranked fighters helps prepare him for a potential mega fight somewhere down the line, maybe in late 2018 at the earliest.

Moving onto the Paulie Malignaggi video, two videos did surface last weekend that actually have disputed Malignaggi's claims that he was pushed down instead of knocked down by McGregor during their sparring session. Malignaggi is still on a social media crusade to Dana White about releasing the full video of the sparring session, but at this point, it's highly unlikely he'll release the full thing even after the fight on August 26 is done.

Whether or not it was a push or a knockdown, the craze surrounding this video actually has fans wanting to see a McGregor vs. Malignaggi sometime in the future, which is par for the course for McGregor. McGregor has masterfully crafted this scenario where he has set up another boxing fight down the road in case he wants to get back into the ring, a thought that McGregor has said wants to entertain.

When Malignaggi came in to help McGregor spar with Mayweather, McGregor has worked everybody into wanting to see McGregor box again after the Mayweather fight and although fighting Malignaggi is far less lucrative deal than Mayweather, there is almost just as much genuine interest as there is for the Mayweather fight.

Results from the world of boxing:

August 15: Shimazu Arena, Kyoto, Kyoto, Japan

  • Luis Nery defeats Shinsuke Yamanaka to win the WBC World Bantamweight Title: TKO, Round 4

August 14: August Casino Dreams, Temuco, Chile

  • Cristian Palma defeats Kevin Leonel Acevedo via UD
  • Isis Mascarena defeats Laura Valdebenito via UD

August 14: Ram 100 Thai Boxing Stadium, Ramkamhaeng, Bangkok, Thailand

  • Qiang Luo defeats Yuttana Wongda: TKO, Round 3
  • Kun Wang defeats Pathueang Sikun: UD (40-36, 40-36, 40-36)

August 13: Shan Di Exhibition Centre, Xingyi, China

  • Zhi Hu Xiong defeats Shao You Ma: UD (39-37, 39-37, 40-36)
  • Du Ning defeats Fu Jun Yang: UD (39-35, 38-36, 38-36)
  • Ming Zhong Yang defeats Jian Fu Tan: TKO, Round 2
  • Pei Jun defeats Tao Li: TKO, Round 3

August 12: Shan Di Exhibition Centre, Xingyi, China

  • Li Ming Wang defeats Li Jiang Liu: KO, Round 1
  • De Bin Zhou and Zhi Jian Bai fought to a split draw (37-39, 39-37, 38-38)
  • Hou Shun Wang defeats Tao Yang: TKO, Round 4
  • De Kang Wang defeats Tao Wang: UD (40-36, 40-36, 39-37)
  • Hui Lu defeats Xu Lang Luo: TKO, Round 2

August 12: Mala Buna, Croatia

  • Ema Kozin defeats Divna Vujanovic via PTS
  • Ivica Perkovic defeats Nedeljko Cvorovic: TKO, Round 1
  • Ivica Bacurin defeats Milos Dovedan: TKO, Round 2
  • Ivan Njegac defeats Matija Bobic: TKO, Round 1
  • Marino Goles defeats Branislav Plavsic: TKO, Round 2
  • Bosko Misic defeats Ivan Sakic: TKO, Round 2

August 12: Lawaqa Park, Sigatoka, Fiji

  • Abhay Chand defeats Matthew Michael: TKO, Round 3
  • Jese Ravudi defeats Franco Frazer: TKO, Round 2
  • Vilimoni Taganikoro defeats Josefa Vaileba: TKO, Round 4
  • Siliveni Nawai defeats Pita Tabuarua: TKO, Round 1
  • Rahul Aoron Kumar defeats Junior Wahid Khan: TKO, Round 4
  • Ulaiasi Qalomai defeats Junior Feroz via PTS
  • Rahul Pillaya defeats Hissum Khan: TKO, Round 5
  • Ratuepeli Naliva defeats Chin Sami Naidu: TKO, Round 2
  • Jonasa Kavika defeats Simon Peter Whippy: TKO, Round 1
  • Elenoa Matanisiga defeats Katrina Singh via PTS
  • Malakai Marama defeats Rakuro Daunivanana: TKO, Round 2
  • Saimoni Mario defeats Shefazud Dean via PTS

August 12: Fischbachhalle, Saarbruecken, Saarland, Germany

  • Mirco Martin defeats Robert Onggocan: UD (96-94, 96-95, 97-92)
  • Prisca Vicot defeats Timea Belik to win the vacant German International Lightweight Title: UD (100-91, 99-91, 100-91)
  • Verena Kaiser defeats Eva Bajic: UD (60-53, 60-54, 59-54)
  • Oleksandr Zakhozhyi defeats Irakli Gvenetadze: UD (60-52, 57-54, 58-54)
  • Omar Darwich defeats Imre Simon: TKO, Round 3
  • Zino Meuli defeats Jasmin Dananovic: TKO, Round 3

August 12: Shamelin Shopping Mall, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

  • Jeson Umbal defeats Arief Blader: TKO, Round 7
  • Azizbek Abdugofurov defeats Jackson Malinyingi via UD
  • Yuvant Mitadevar defeats Amirulfadzli Pendi: KO, Round 1
  • Asadbek Avazov defeats Boido Simanjuntak via UD
  • Theena Thayalan defeats Indra Anser via UD
  • Muhammad Shehran defeats Eddey Kalai via UD
  • Romans Seredjuks defeats Satria Antasena: TKO, Round 1

August 12: Arena Oasis, Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico

  • Francisco Rodriguez Jr. defeats Elias Joaquino: KO, Round 7
  • Alejandra Jimenez defeats Vanessa Lepage Joanisse to retain the WBC World Female Heavyweight Title: TKO, Round 3
  • Yuriorkis Gamboa defeats Alexis Reyes via MD
  • Joaquin Cruz defeats Ocar Cantu via UD
  • Alexis Bastar defeats Ruben Estrella via PTS
  • Maricela Cornejo defeats Vanessa Rodriquez via PTS
  • Daniel Soto defeats Alexis Dominguez via PTS
  • Argenis Alvarez defeats Javier Cupul via PTS
  • Darwin Berron defeats Rodrigo Solis: KO, Round 1

August 12: Auditorio Municipal, Ocosingo, Chiapas, Mexico

  • Cesar Soriano Berumen defeats Humberto Ocampo: TKO, Round 5
  • Gustavo Molina defeats Concepcion Perez via UD
  • Alejandro Ramos defeats Diego Vazquez via UD
  • Martha Patricia Lara Gaytan defeats Ingrid Hernandez Sanchez via UD
  • Alfredo Arellano defeats Luis Garcia via UD
  • Octavio Ocampo defeats Alexis Ramirez: TKO, Round 2
  • Marco Antonio Cruz Gonzalez defeats Mario Zambrano: UD (39-37, 39-37, 39-37)
  • Sergio Garcia Perez defeats Jose Gomez: UD (40-36, 40-36, 40-36)
  • Jorge Gonzalez Bravo defeats Ramiro Nucamendi: TKO, Round 1

August 12: Gimnasio Usos Múltiples UdeG, Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico

  • Salvador Briseno defeats Alejandro Zuniga: KO, Round 5
  • Jorge Garcia and Santiago Estrada fought to a draw on PTS
  • Benito Garcia defeats Octavio Gonzalez Chaires: TKO, Round 5
  • Gabriel Jordan Valenzuela defeats Jose de Alba via UD
  • Logan Yoon defeats Jonathan Garcia: TKO, Round 3
  • Aslanbek Daurov Alborov defeats Noe Mota: DQ, Round 4
  • Ronaldo Briseno defeats Jose de Jesus Hernandez via UD
  • Ronaldo Ruelas defeats Ivan Ibarra via UD
  • Jorge Hernandez defeats Manuel Gloria via SD
  • Hector Alejandro Hernandez defeats Ramiro Garcia Lopez via PTS
  • Leo Vaca defeats Miguel Garcia via PTS

August 12: Gimnasio Nuevo León Unido, Monterrey, Nuevo León, Mexico

  • Roberto Garcia defeats Omar Chavez to win the vacant WBC Silver Middleweight Title: UD (97-92, 96-93, 96-93)
  • Moises Calleros defeats Mario Rodriguez via UD
  • Diego Fabian Eligio defeats Jesus Quijada via UD
  • Jorge Garcia defeats Agustin Lugo via UD
  • Maximino Flores defeats David Martinez: TKO, Round 6
  • Adrian Curiel defeats Emmanuel Zuniga via PTS
  • Sergio Sanchez defeats Jose de Jesus Gutierrez Contreras via KO
  • Jose Arturo Torres defeats Alexis Gomez: TKO, Round 2
  • David Picaso defeats Oscar Espinoza: KO, Round 2

August 12: Coliseo Roger L. Mendoza, Caguas, Puerto Rico

  • Abner Cotto defeats Jorge Rodriguez: TKO, Round 1
  • Danielito Zorrilla defeats Josue Loyola: KO, Round 4
  • Magdiel Cotto defeats Miguel Queliz: TKO, Round 3
  • Josean Figueroa defeats Christian Fernandez via UD
  • Miguel Canino defeats Mike Erosa via UD
  • Steven Ruidiaz defeats Orlando Fernandez: TKO, Round 3
  • Michael Adorno defeats Jesus Feliciano: TKO, Round 3

August 12: Manyara Pack, Manzese, Tanzania

  • Twalib Tuwa and Haidari Mchanjo fight to a draw on PTS
  • Japhet Kaseba defeats Selemani Saidi to win the vacant Tanzania Professional Boxing Commission Light Heavyweight Title via MD
  • Hashimu Zuberi defeats Oscar Richard to win the vacant Tanzania Professional Boxing Commission Super Flyweight Title via MD
  • Iddi Mkwela defeats Adam Ngange via MD
  • Ibrahim Tamba defeats Imani Daudi via UD
  • Nassoro Madimba and Bakari Magona fight to a draw on PTS
  • Hamza Mchanjo defeats Halidi Jagalaga: KO, Round 2
  • Adam Mrisho defeats Ismail Ndende: TKO, Round 5
  • Amos Mwamakula defeats Rashid Seleman: KO, Round 2
  • Abdul Rikaule defeats Yahaya Ramadhani via MD
  • Fadhili Majiha defeats Shabani Rambo: KO, Round 1
  • Hashimu Masungu defeats Selemani Simba: TKO, Round 2
  • Oscar Kitale defeats Luckman Ramadhani via PTS
  • Haridi Manjee defeats Isihaka Norbert: TKO, Round 3
  • Feruzi Haji defeats Abdul Mweremba via PTS
  • Feriche Mashaur defeats Ester Boaz via PTS

August 12: Churchill County Fair Grounds, Fallon, Nevada, USA

  • Oscar Vasquez defeats Javier Gallo via UD
  • Pedro Moreno defeats Curtis Niko Morton: TKO, Round 3
  • Quilisto Madera defeats Austin Marcum: KO, Round 2
  • Diego Elizondo defeats Chandler Clements via UD
  • Gabriel Flores Jr. defeats Jorge Hugo Padron via UD

August 12: A La Carte Event Pavilion, Tampa, Florida, USA

  • Yamaguchi Falcao defeats Taronze Washington: TKO, Round 4
  • Cesar Seda defeats Rogelio Casarez via UD
  • Connor Coyle defeats Joshua Maxwell via UD
  • Clay Burns defeats Ricky Tomlinson via MD
  • Leonardo Kenon defeats Tommy Bryant via UD
  • Joseph Cole defeats John Cooley: KO, Round 1
  • Jordan Sanders and Joseph White fight to a majority draw

August 12: Masonic Temple, Norfolk, Virginia, USA

  • Jerry Forrest defeats Grover Young: DQ, Round 1
  • Frankie Filippone defeats Brian Macy: TKO, Round 2
  • Alexandru Marin defeats Juan Palacios: TKO, Round 2
  • Roger Belch defeats James Montgomery via UD
  • Dorin Spivey defeats Lamont White via UD
  • Seth Billups defeats Rynell Griffin via UD
  • Montez Brown defeats Chaz Dowdell: TKO, Round 2
  • George Sheppar defeats Carlos Cruz via UD

August 12: Rivers Casino, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA

  • Bill Hutchinson defeats Victor Abreu: KO, Round 2
  • Jermaine Franklin defeats Daniel Pasciolla: TKO, Round 6
  • Matt Conway defeats Osnel Charles via UD
  • Kevin Shacks defeats Kel Smith: TKO, Round 4
  • Mark Daley defeats Raphael Sinegal via MD
  • Rosalindo Morales defeats Adam Young via UD
  • Branden Pizarro defeats Israel Villela via UD

August 12: Derby Park Expo, Louisville, Kentucky, USA

  • Craig Lewis defeats Galen Brown: KO, Round 2
  • Joshua Flores defeats Ramiro Bueno Jr. via UD
  • Dewayne Zeigler defeats Donte Bryant via SD
  • Nicholas Givhan defeats Thomas Allen via UD
  • Francisco Vazquez Irizarry defeats Cameron Cain via UD

August 12: Howard Theatre, Washington, District of Columbia, USA

  • Patrick Harris defeats Jesus Lule via UD
  • Kareem Martin defeats Evincii Dixon via UD
  • Franchon Crews Dezurn defeats Sydney LeBlanc: UD (40-36, 40-36, 40-36)
  • Shyngyskhan Tazhibay defeats Robert Hill: UD (40-36, 40-36, 40-36)
  • Tiara Brown defeats Tammy Franks: TKO, Round 2
  • Brandun Lee defeats Roy Garcia: TKO, Round 2
  • Jaron Ennis defeats Ricardo Cano: KO, Round 1

August 12: Turner Hall, Madison, Wisconsin, USA

  • Deonte Wilson defeats Mike Fowler via UD
  • Ashton Sykes defeats Jeffrey Wright via UD
  • Antoine Elerson and Daniel Torres fight to a majority draw
  • Brian Guzman defeats Dale Bennett: TKO, Round 1

August 12: Palacio Peñarol, Montevideo, Uruguay

  • Chris Namus defeats Yamila Esther Reynoso to win the vacant IBF World Female Super Welterweight Title: UD (99-90, 98-91, 100-89)
  • Yesica Yolanda Bopp defeats Olga Julio to retain the WBA World Female Light Flyweight Title: UD (100-90, 100-90, 100-90)
  • Eduardo Javier Abreu defeats Brian Nicolas Laguna: UD (60-54, 60-53, 60-53)
  • Eduardo Estela defeats Roberto Carlos Torres: UD (38-37, 38-37, 38-37)

August 12: Nuevo Circo, Caracas, Venezuela

  • Carlos Canizales defeats Argenis Cheremo: TKO, Round 4
  • Pedro Verdu defeats Alfredo Mirabal via UD
  • Jampier Osses and Felipe Lares fight to a split draw
  • Nohel Arambulet defeats Vicente Mirabal via UD
  • Gilbert Gonzalez defeats Geraid Benites: TKO, Round 2
  • Orlando Pino defeats Jose Barrios via UD
  • Victor Matute defeats Rafael Hernandez: TKO, Round 3
  • Edinso Torres Jr. defeats Milfrido Mirabal via UD
  • Jesus Correa defeats Jonathan Caraballo: TKO, Round 1
  • Luis Golindano defeats Denilson Escalona via UD

August 11: Estadio Parque Central, Neuquen, Neuquen, Argentina

  • Betiana Patricia Vinas defeats Gloria Elena Yancaqueo: UD (99-94, 99-96, 100-95)

August 11: Sociedad General Belgrano, Cordoba, Cordoba, Argentina

  • Caril Herrera defeats Julio Escudero to retain the interim WBC Latino Super Bantamweight Title: KO, Round 1
  • Cristian Rafael Coria defeats Roberto Francisco Ogas: TKO, Round 1
  • Alberto Ignacio Palmetta defeats Oscar Alberto Paz: RTD, Round 3
  • Nahuel Martinez defeats Daniel Alberto Rivas: UD (39-26, 38-37, 39-36)
  • Ckari Cani Mansilla defeats Joaquin Andres Torrez: TKO, Round 2
  • Maximiliano Coronel defeats Juan Martinez: UD (40-38, 40-36, 40-36)
  • Gonzalo Coria defeats Emiliano Vivas: UD (40-33, 40-35, 39-36)

August 11: Club Defensores de Villa Lujan, San Miguel, Tucuman, Argentina

  • Manuel Alberto Pucheta defeats Julio Cuellar Cabrera: KO, Round 2
  • Marcos Joel Arias defeats Giovany Menacho Rojas: UD (40-36, 40-35, 40-37)

August 11: Gimnasio Municipal Carlos Gravanaro, Pirovano, Buenos Aires, Argentina

  • Jeremias Javier Ulibarre defeats Luis Roberto Mato via MD

August 11: Gimnasio Municipal Nº 1, Comodoro Rivadavia, Chubut, Argentina

  • Sebastian Ezequiel Aguirre defeats Angel Rafael Gonzalez: KO, Round 4
  • Rodrigo Ramon Maizares defeats Victor Nicolas Cabral via SD

August 11: Hindú Basquetbol Club, Catamarca, Catamarca, Argentina

  • Jennifer Rasjido defeats Vanesa del Valle Calderon: KO, Round 3

August 11: Club Atlético Argentinos, 25 de Mayo, Buenos Aires, Argentina

  • Tamara Elizabeth Demarco defeats Yisele Yolanda Sosa: UD (40-37, 40-37, 40-37)

August 11: Gimnasio Club Mexico, Santiago de Chile, Chile

  • Miguel Gonzalez defeats Anuar Salas: UD (107-102, 109-100, 106-103)

August 11: Shan Di Exhibition Centre, Xingyi, China

  • Yong Zhang defeats Pierre Amour Aboya via UD
  • Chun Ming Li defeats Xing Wen Wang via UD
  • Li Ping Shi defeats Puneh Akhundtabarmazandarani via UD
  • Vertu Lys Ikombo Otoka defeats Ilir Smakici via MD
  • Xiao Tao Su defeats Ryusei Shimizu via UD
  • Di Wu Mai defeats Ke Hu Huang via UD
  • Cheng Hong Tao defeats Yuki Ishizumi: TKO, Round 3

August 11: Club Arabe de Colon, Colon City, Panama

  • Omir Rodriguez defeats Adrian Perez. Vacant WBA Fedecaribe Welterweight Title bout. Rodríguez was over the weight limit, title stays vacant: TKO, Round 5
  • Edgar Valencia defeats Israel Hidrogo: UD (60-53, 58-55, 58-55)
  • Kelly Figueroa defeats Eric Walters: KO, Round 2
  • Pablo Vicente defeats Leonel Lugo: TKO, Round 5
  • Azael Villar and Jesus Martinez fight to a majority draw (57-57, 57-57, 59-54)
  • Damian Rodriguez defeats Rafael May: UD (60-54, 60-54, 60-54)
  • Jaime Munoz defeats Jose Bernal: TKO, Round 2
  • Daniel Matellon defeats Yenrry Bermudez: TKO, Round 4
  • Rafael Pedroza defeats Henry Arrieta: KO, Round 1

August 11: 14 Hope Street, Cape Town Gardens, Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

  • Emile Kalekuzi defeats Mzoxolo Dyani: TKO, Round 3
  • Mnikelo Ndema defeats Thembani Semani: TKO, Round 3
  • Marius Matamba defeats Ernest Msoliza via UD
  • Dillon Yule defeats Ilunga Masala via PTS
  • Michael Daries defeats Ryan Mthandana: TKO, Round 4
  • Mzukisi Mthalan defeats Zusiphe Timakwe via PTS

August 11: Belk Center, Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA

  • Robert Alfonso defeats Jason Bergman to win the vacant USBA Southern Region Heavyweight Title: UD (99-90, 99-90, 99-90)
  • Jamal Woods defeats Willie Herring: MD (58-56, 57-57, 59-55)
  • Curtis Harper defeats Andrew Greeley: TKO, Round 3
  • Deon Nicholson defeats Raymond Gray: KO, Round 3
  • Arturo Aguilar defeats Fred Weaver: TKO, Round 3
  • Gregory Averil Young Jr. defeats Andrew Goodrich: SD (39-36, 39-37, 37-38)
  • Thomas Knox defeats Nicholas Gay: TKO, Round 3

August 11: SugarHouse Casino, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

  • Erik Spring defeats David Wilson via MD
  • Marquis Taylor defeats Vincent Floyd via UD
  • Antonio Dubose defeats Josh Crespo via UD
  • Brandon Robinson defeats Shane Pearson: KO, Round 2
  • Elvin Sanchez defeats Khalib Whitmore: TKO, Round 2
  • Christian Carto defeats Philip Adyaka: TKO, Round 2
  • Kashon Hutchinson defeats Demetris Williams via UD
  • Jerrod Minor defeats Steven Lopez: TKO, Round 4
  • Shamsuddeen Justice defeats Titos Matthew Gosalves: TKO, Round 1
  • Christian Montano defeats Dameron Kirby: TKO, Round 1

August 10: Hotel Hills, Sarajevo, Bosnia And Herzegovina

  • Selma Baltic defeats Katarina Vistica: UD (59-56, 59-55, 59-55)

August 10: Celano, Abruzzo, Italy

  • Angelo Rizzo defeats Christian Solito via SD
  • Marco Di Giamberardino defeats Luigi Mantegna via PTS

August 10: Korakuen Hall, Japan

  • Keita Obara defeats Narong Boonchan to win the vacant WBO Asia Pacific Welterweight Title: TKO, Round 2
  • Takeshi Inoue defeats Riku Nagahama to retain the Japanese Super Welterweight Title: TKO, Round 8
  • Shuichiro Yoshino defeats Katika Saithonggym: TKO, Round 2
  • Masashi Kamon defeats Kimihiro Nakagawa: UD (58-56, 58-56, 58-57)
  • Yoshimitsu Kimura defeats Kanehiro Nakagawa: UD (59-54, 59-55, 58-55)
  • Ryuto Owan defeats Dengutchum Sithsortorgo: KO, Round 1
  • Taishi Uchiyama defeats Tomoyuki Hosaka: MD (39-37, 39-37, 38-38)

August 10: Makuti Hall, Morogoro, Tanzania

  • Said Mbelwa defeats Kitwana Halfani: KO, Round 4
  • Ramadhani Migwede defeats Abdallah Mwimba: KO, Round 8
  • Omari Ramadan defeats Furaha Mapepe: KO, Round 5
  • Shabani Kaoneka defeats Kadiri Yassin: KO, Round 4

August 10: Belasco Theater, Los Angeles, California, USA

  • Charles Huerta defeats Miguel Angel Gonzalez: TD (78-75, 77-76, 75-78)
  • Christian Gonzalez defeats Daniel Perales: KO, Round 3
  • Francisco Esparza and Fernando Fuentes fought to a majority draw (58-56, 57-57, 57-57)

Official Fightful Rankings:

Pound-for-pound

  1. Andre Ward
  2. Gennady Golovkin
  3. Canelo Alvarez
  4. Vasyl Lomachenko
  5. Mikey Garcia
  6. Terence Crawford
  7. Keith Thurman
  8. Roman Gonzalez
  9. Guillermo Rigondeaux
  10. Leo Santa Cruz

Heavyweight

  1. Anthony Joshua
  2. Deontay Wilder
  3. Joseph Parker
  4. Luis Ortiz
  5. Kubrat Pulev
  6. Dillian White
  7. Andy Ruiz Jr.
  8. Dominic Breazeale
  9. Charles Martin
  10. Hughie Fury

Cruiserweight

  1. Oleksandr Usyk
  2. Denis Lebediev
  3. Murat Gassiev
  4. Krzysztof Glowacki
  5. Mairis Briedis
  6. Krzysztof Wlodarczyk
  7. Marco Huck
  8. Firat Arslan
  9. Tony Bellew
  10. Yunier Dorticos

Light heavyweight

  1. Andre Ward
  2. Sergey Kovalev
  3. Adonis Stevenson
  4. Nathan Cleverly
  5. Oleksandr Gvozdyk
  6. Sullivan Barrera
  7. Artur Beterbiev
  8. Eleider Alvarez
  9. Juergen Braehmer
  10. Joe Smith Jr.

Super middleweight

  1. James DeGale
  2. Gilberto Ramirez
  3. George Groves
  4. Anthony Dirrell
  5. Andre Dirrell
  6. Jose Uzcategui
  7. Chris Eubank Jr.
  8. Tyron Zeuge
  9. Callum Smith
  10. Juergen Braehmer

Middleweight

  1. Gennady Golovkin
  2. Canelo Alvarez
  3. Daniel Jacobs
  4. Jermall Charlo
  5. David Lemieux
  6. Billy Joe Saunders
  7. Andy Lee
  8. Hassan N’Dam
  9. Ryota Murata
  10. Sergiy Derevyanchenko

Light middleweight

  1. Erislandy Lara
  2. Jermell Charlo
  3. Demetrius Andrade
  4. Jarrett Hurd
  5. Julian Williams
  6. Austin Trout
  7. Erickson Lubin
  8. Liam Smith
  9. Jack Culcay
  10. David Benavidez

Welterweight

  1. Keith Thurman
  2. Errol Spence Jr.
  3. Danny Garcia
  4. Shawn Porter
  5. Manny Pacquiao
  6. Jeff Horn
  7. Kell Brook
  8. Jessie Vargas
  9. Lamont Peterson
  10. Lucas Matthysse

The rest of the rankings are in the next page.

Light welterweight

  1. Terence Crawford
  2. Mikey Garcia*
  3. Julius Indongo
  4. Viktor Postol
  5. Antonio Orozco
  6. Eduard Troyanovski
  7. Rances Barthelemy
  8. Adrian Granados
  9. Ricky Burns
  10. Sergey Lipinets

Lightweight

  1. Jorge Linares
  2. Mikey Garcia*
  3. Terry Flanagan
  4. Robert Easter Jr.
  5. Anthony Crolla
  6. Luke Campbell
  7. Dejan Zlaticanin
  8. Raymundo Beltran
  9. Denis Shafikov
  10. Felix Verdejo

Junior lightweight

  1. Vasyl Lomachenko
  2. Miguel Berchelt
  3. Gervonta Davis
  4. Jezreel Corrales
  5. Francisco Vargas
  6. Orlando Salido
  7. Robinson Castellanos
  8. Jason Sosa
  9. Jhonny Gonzalez
  10. Masayuki Ito

Featherweight

  1. Leo Santa Cruz
  2. Carl Frampton
  3. Gary Russell Jr.
  4. Lee Selby
  5. Abner Mares
  6. Oscar Valdez
  7. Scott Quigg
  8. Jesus Cuellar
  9. Joseph Diaz
  10. Claudio Marrero

Light featherweight

  1. Guillermo Rigondeaux
  2. Jessie Magdaleno
  3. Nonito Donaire
  4. Moises Flores
  5. Hugo Ruiz
  6. Rey Vargas
  7. Marlon Tapales
  8. Julio Ceja
  9. Yukinori Oguni
  10. Ronny Rios

Bantamweight

  1. Jamie McDonnell
  2. Luis Nery
  3. Zhanat Zhakiyanov
  4. Ryan Burnett
  5. Juan Carlos Payano
  6. Shinsuke Yamanaka
  7. Zolani Tete
  8. Lee Haskins
  9. Takoma Inoue
  10. Liborio Solis

Light bantamweight

  1. Naoya Inoue
  2. Roman Gonzalez
  3. Srisaket Sor Rungvisai
  4. Jerwin Ancajas
  5. Khalid Yafai
  6. Carlos Cuadras
  7. Juan Francisco Estrada
  8. John Riel Casimero
  9. Rau'shee Warren
  10. Luis Concepcion

Flyweight

  1. Kazuto Ioka
  2. Donnie Nietes
  3. Daigo Higa
  4. Juan Carlos Reveco
  5. Sho Kimura
  6. Moruti Mthalane
  7. McWilliams Arroyo
  8. Francisco Rodriguez Jr.
  9. Zou Shiming
  10. Komgrich Nantapech

Light flyweight/Strawweight

  1. Milan Melindo
  2. Kosei Tanaka
  3. Knockout CP Freshmart
  4. Jose Argumedo
  5. Ken Shiro
  6. Ryoichi Taguchi
  7. Tatsuya Fukuhara
  8. Hekkie Budler
  9. Pedro Guevara
  10. Wanheng Menayothin

* Since Mikey Garcia's future is yet to be determined, I decided to put him in both the lightweight and light welterweight rankings until Garcia makes a decision in what weight class he will compete next.

Other news in boxing

1. Gennady Golovkin was well within the mandated weight limit at his WBC 30-day weight check on August 16. He weighed 170 pounds though he could have been as heavy as 176 pounds for the weight check in advance of his long-awaited showdown with Canelo Alvarez on September 16 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. Alvarez did not participate in the 30-day weight check because he has declined to box for the WBC title, though Golovkin is defending it along with his two other major 160-pound title belts, the WBA and WBO middleweight titles.

2. Speaking of Canelo vs. Golovkin, Golden Boy Promotions hoped to match Joseph Diaz Jr. and Josh Warrington in a featherweight world title eliminator on the HBO PPV undercard on Sept. 16 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. However, Golden Boy told ESPN that Warrington and promoter Frank Warren pulled out of the scheduled purse bid and won’t go through with the fight. Golden Boy said it is now going down the WBC’s rankings to find an opponent willing to face Diaz in the eliminator that would move the winner toward a mandatory shot at world titlist Gary Russell Jr.

3. World Boxing Super Series officials announced that former world titleholder Krzysztof Glowacki and Mateusz Masternak have been named as reserves for the eight-man cruiserweight tournament. Assuming they are not needed to act as reserves, they will fight on the undercards of the quarterfinal they are assigned to. Glowacki, who lost his belt to tournament No. 1 seed Oleksandr Usyk, is the reserve for the Mairis Briedis-Mike Perez title fight on September 30 in Riga, Latvia. If one of the fighters is unable to fight that night, Glowacki will step in as the replacement. Former European champion Masternak is the reserve for the Murat Gassiev-Krzysztof Wlodarczyk title fight. The date and venue of that bout has not yet been announced.

4. David Price is returning on the undercard of the World Boxing Super Series card headlined by the super middleweight quarterfinal between Callum Smith and Erik Skoglund on Sept. 16 at Echo Arena in Liverpool, England, Price’s hometown. Price will face journeyman Raphael Zumbano Love, whose list of boxers he's faced include Anthony Joshua, Andy Ruiz Jr., Charles Martin and Shannon Briggs.

5. With Bryant Jennings returning to the ring, Top Rank's Bob Arum already has big plns for the heavyweight. Arum said he is trying to secure a fight between him and WBO heavyweight champion Joseph Parker, perhaps for an ESPN card in 2018. Parker does need to defeat mandatory challenger Hughie Fury, Tyson Fury's cousin, on September 23 before there is any talks of a Parker-Jennings occur. Arum said he is confident he could make that fight happen should the right pieces fall into place.

Shane Mosley Retires

The boxing retirement carousel has come back to pick up another future Hall of Famer. "Sugar" Shane Mosley, one of boxing's best pound-for-pound fighters in the late 1990s all the way to the late 2000s, has announced his retirement.

The latest in the great lineage of boxers wearing the moniker of “Sugar,” Mosley’s resume included dozens of great fights and legendary wins.

Mosley told ESPN that he's gotten too old for the sport and does want to step out of active competition. Mosley did say he will remain in the sport and help out, but won't be pursuing any fights anymore.

"I decided that I'm older now. I'm not the same as I used to be, so I need to let it go as far as me trying to compete as a fighter anymore," Mosley said. "I'm definitely always going to be around boxing. I'll still go to the gym and show people stuff, help them out. I still love boxing. It's still my life but just not as a fighter anymore."

The 45-year-old Mosley, who turns 46 in early September, did have a fight planned in Russia later this year, but the bout was canceled after Mosley need to have surgery to shave down a bothersome bone spur and to remove fragments from his right elbow.

Despite fighting for a world title last year against David Avanesyan, the WBA interim welterweight, Mosley's surgery was a sign for Mosley to step down.

"What happened was my arm is breaking down, my knees, shoulders," Mosley said. "My back is starting to break down. My body is telling me I'm older and I can't do it at 100 percent. I can't see myself fighting again. I'd have to say I'm retired."

Mosley would then later reveal that the surgery was botched, which pretty much closed the book on his career.

"I went in for a minor arthroscopic surgery to remove a couple loose bone fragments from my elbow and the surgery turned into a whole ordeal after the surgeon admittedly 'accidentally' burned me on my forearm, leading to a sick infection and needing like four or five days of IV antibiotics and two weeks of antibiotics at home," Mosley said. "It was crazy and surreal to learn that I could never fight again."

A standout amateur, Mosley barely made it into the Olympic team. Mosley is a three-time United Statas Amateur Champion and won the silver medal in the 1989 World Junior Championships in San Juan, Puerto Rico fighting in the 132-pound division.

After starting his pro career with a perfect 23-0 record, Mosley won his first world title when he beat Philip Holiday in 1997 to win the IBF lightweight title. Mosley defended the title for almost three years, having defeated names such as John John Molina and Jesse James Leija.

Mosley moved up in weight from lightweight to welterweight and scored a career-defining win against Oscar De La Hoya in 2000 to capture the unified WBC, IBA and lineal welterweight world titles.

Mosley and De La Hoya ended up having a rematch in 2004, this time for the unified light middleweight titles and Mosley once again scored the win, winning a world title in three weight classes.

Best known for never stepping down from a challenge, Mosley fought an extensive list of Hall of Fame-caliber boxers such as Vernon Forrest, Miguel Cotto, Antonio Margarito, Canelo Alvarez, Ricardo Mayorga, Floyd Mayweather, Fernando Vargas, Manny Pacquiao and many more.

Despite not having a major win since beating Antonio Margarito in 2009, a match marred by cntroversy due to Margarito being caught with illegal hand wraps, which would end up being one of the most defining (as well as negative) chapters of Margarito's career, Mosley was still a decent fighter in the welterweight division. He wasn't going to win a world title at this stage of his career, especially against an extremely stacked welterweight class that includes PAcquiao, Errol Spence, Keith Thurman, Danny Garcia, Shawn Porter and many others.

Mosley retires with 49-10-1 with 41 KO and 1 NC and two reigns as the unified welterweight and junior middleweight world champion. With Mosley retiring, the list of boxers who have retired so far this year just keeps growing. Guys like Wladimir Klitschko, Robert Guerrero, Takashi Miura, Takashi Uchiyama, Tyson Fury and more have announced their retirement in 2017 and Miguel Cotto looks to soon follow as he said that he will retire at the end of the year.

Fightful Boxing Retrospective: 35th Anniversary of Salvador Sanchez’s Death

For this week, I will not do a breakdown of the fight, because this week's retrospective is more of a celebration of boxer's career than looking at a specific fight. This week we're taking a look at the life of former featherweight world champion Salvador Sanchez, whose life tragically ended when his career was starting to flourish and was about to enter historic levels of dominance in his weight class. This past week marked the 35th anniversary of his death.

Sanchez was a major Mexican boxing star in the United States with the advent of HBO’s foray into boxing, especially in an era where not many featherweights were considered major stars of the sport. Sanchez had extremely rare knockout power for someone who fought at a weight class that did not produce pure knockout artists, but Sanchez's impressive frame for a 126-pound boxer and distinct afro hairstyle made him a standout star for Mexican and American boxing fans. Sanchez finished his career 44-1-1 and was posthumously inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1991.

His run as the featherweight world champion was about as dominant as there was in the history of the sport's featherweight division. Sanchez defended the WBC and lineal titles nine times in just 25 months, a rare feat that almost no world champion would even attempt in this day and age.

After an extremely brief amateur career, of which it was reported only lasted four fights, Sanchez became a professional boxer at the extremely young age of 16 years old. Sanchez started piling up wins against tough opponents such as Saul Montana and Raul Lopez in his native of Mexico. His first real test as a professional boxer came in his 19th professional fight against Antonio Becerra with the Mexican bantamweight title on the line. Becerra was too much for the 18-year-old Sanchez. Sanchez managed to provide a tremendously hard-fought battle that saw his stock rise tremendously, even after losing to Becerra via split decision.

Sanchez bounced back from the loss and moved up in weight to the featherweight division. Soon after doing so, he had picked up the biggest win of his career up to that point, defeating Puerto Rican featherweight champion Felix Trinidad Sr. That win would see him earn a shot for the WBC featherweight title against champion Danny "Little Red" Lopez. Lopez was a popular TV fighter of the late 1970s who routinely fought in a lot of exciting fights, scoring wins against the likes of former world champion David Kotei (twice), Juan Malvares and Mike Ayala. By this point, Lopez was riding an 18-fight win streak and four years into his reign as WBC champion and was touted as a somewhat heavy favorite against the burgeoning Sanchez. Lopez was knocked out by Sanchez, being stopped in the 13th round in Phoenix, Arizona, United States on February 2, 1980.

Just two months after beating Lopez, Sanchez defended his title for the first time with a 15-round unanimous decision against Ruben Castillo. Unhappy with the way he lost the title and believing that Sanchez's win was a fluke, Lopez asked for a rematch, but he result was the same: a late-fight TKO loss to Sanchez in Sanchez's first fight in Las Vegas.

Over the next several months, Sanchez would end up defeating several big names in the sport at that time, including legendary Puerto Rican boxing figure Wilfredo Gomez. Gomez, who was the former WBC bantamweight champion, moved up in weight to challenge Sanchez for his title and proceeded to get dominated and ultimately get knocked out about halfway through the fight that took place on August 1981.

With the victory, Sanchez was an unknown to the casual boxing fan no more. He became a household name all over the United States that night and attracted the eyes of HBO. His defense against unheralded Jorge "Rocky" Garcia was the first fight featuring two featherweights ever to be televised by the network as it was starting expand its boxing coverage and broadcasting to include more fighters from different weight classes.

On July 21, 1982, Sánchez faced future champion Azumah Nelson at Madison Square Garden. Nelson, a late substitute for mandatory challenger Mario Miranda, was unknown at the time and expected to only go a few rounds with Sanchez. The fight went way longer than anyone expected, probably even longer than Nelson himself would have expected. The fight was among the roughest and hardest-hitting featherweight affairs at the time. In the 15th and final round, Sanchez broke out finally, connecting with a serious combination that dropped the challenger almost outside the ring. Referee Tony Perez had to stop the fight seconds later, awarding the win to Sanchez. Nelson went on to have a great career of his own career and even was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2004.

As he was training for a rematch with Laporte set for September 1982, he crashed on the early morning of August 12, 1982, while driving his Porsche 928 sports car along the federal highway from Santiago de Querétaro to San Luis Potosí, dying instantly. At the time of his death, there were talks about a bout with Miranda, a rematch with Gomez or a challenge of world lightweight champion Alexis Argüello, another all-time great with unbelievable knockout power for his weight class. There had been negotiations between the Sanchez and Argüello camps but they broke off when Argüello chose to campaign as a junior welterweight.

It really was a shame Sanchez and Argüello could not come to an agreement to the fight. The two of them were still in the prime of their careers and with Sanchez quickly asserting himself as an HBO boxing star, a fight between the two of them would have done outstanding numbers given the circumstances.

Obviously I was not alive during his career, but I have talked to my father, a longtime boxing fan, about Sanchez and he does recall Sanchez’s fight against Gomez back in Puerto Rico.

“Sanchez was a beast, a true machine,” my father told me over the phone when we talked about Sanchez. “I remember seeing him fight Gomez and as much as I love Gomez, there was no doubt that Sanchez had won that fight. If he hadn’t died, he might have been the greatest featherweight of all time.”

So as a special tribute to Sanchez, here is Sanchez’s final fight, just weeks before his death.

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