Monday, June 12, 2017

The Boxing Glove Big Fight Preview: Guillermo Rigondeaux vs Moises Flores... Return Of The Jackal

By Peter Silkov

Guillermo Rigondeaux (17-0, 11koes) returns to the ring next week, June 17, at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, on the undercard of the much-awaited Andre Ward vs Sergey Kovalev rematch. While Ward vs Kovalev 2 is obviously the main attraction, the true die hard boxing connoisseur will also be eager to see ‘The Jackal’ back in action once more, when he defends his WBA and IBO world super-bantamweight titles against the unbeaten Moises Flores (25-0, 17koes.) It is difficult to find a boxer of recent years who has been more mistreated both by the sports media, a section of the fans, and some of the most prominent promoters. Promoter Bob Arum’s outright vendetta against Rigondeaux, since ‘The Jackal’ humiliated and beat Nonito Donaire back in 2013, has been shameless. Rigondeaux has been effectively blackballed and shunted into the sidelines. He has also had to take a huge amount of abuse, ranging from him being a ‘boring’ boxer to other, far more personal insults. At times, the disparaging remarks aimed at Rigondeaux have carried the unmistakable smell of racism.

Photo: Boxing Insider
For any boxer to have to suffer such treatment in the 21st century is unacceptable.The fact that Rigondeaux is one of the most gifted boxers of his generation, who left behind his family in Cuba, in order to follow a professional career in the USA, makes his treatment even more outrageous.

Rigondeaux has a polarising effect upon most boxing fans. His highly technical counter-punching skills are not appreciated by all. Yet he has a speed and grace which is rarely seen in the ring these days. In addition to his speed, and defensive ability, Rigondeaux can also punch (as witnessed by 2 of his last 3 opponents suffering broken jaws against him). These are the ‘old school’ skills, which those who really appreciate the ‘sweet science’ identify as making Rigondeaux one of the top boxers in the world today, pound for pound. Rigondeaux’s biggest problem, especially since he beat Donaire, has been finding opponents willing to fight him.

Photo: BBC
Since he beat Donaire in April 2013, Rigondeaux has fought just 5 times. He has also endured being stripped of his various world titles for ‘inactivity’ when he couldn’t find top opponents willing to face him. It was ludicrous to see him deprived of his titles by men in suits, and then these titles being bestowed upon fighters who did not want to face him in the ring. Rigondeaux was left to watch as Carl Frampton, Scott Quigg and Leo Santa Cruz, held their own little round robin of fights, eventually all moving up to featherweight, so that they could continue to avoid him.

Now 36 years old, time is running short for Rigondeaux to make use of his exceptional boxing prowess. He will be hoping that Saturday will mark a new beginning in his career, and that being showcased on the undercard of Ward vs Kovalev 2, will finally lead to the kind of big fight which he has been yearning for since he beat Donaire.

Photo: Probox
Standing in his way will be the substantial figure of unbeaten Mexican Moises Flores, who stands 5' feet 9” to Rigondeaux’s 5' feet 4”, and carries a formidable dig in his hands. One that has seen him score 17 knockouts in his 25 victories.

Rigondeaux is a throwback fighter in that, he does not put on huge amounts of weight between the weigh-in and fight time. If anything Rigo looks as if he could make the 118 bantamweight limit if he wanted. On fight night he will be dwarfed by Flores, who is also likely to enter the ring with a substantial weight advantage on his 5” 9”frame. Yet ‘The Jackal’ is a special boxer, who, skills-wise, is leagues above anyone else whom Flores has faced previously in his career. Rigondeaux also likes opponents who come at him aggressively, which is Flores style.

Unless ‘The Jackal’ has slipped physically, due to his encroaching age and enforced competitive activity, he should be able to handle Flores comfortably. It is to be hoped that Flores, when he tastes Rigondeaux’s punching power will not simply go into his shell, like so many of ‘The Jackal’s previous opponents.

Against an aggressive and willing fighter, which Flores has proved to be so far in his career, Rigondeaux is likely to be able to show off his best skills in addition to his punching power. Flores only chance of victory here will be via a stoppage, and he may well start very fast, in the hope of catching the older Rigondeaux early.

If Flores fights, with this tactic in mind, then this could very well be the fight of the night, with Rigondeaux being able to showcase his mix of speed, skill and power, on the way to scoring a late round stoppage of Flores. Look for a victory for ‘The Jackal’ somewhere between the 8th and 10th rounds.

Follow us on Twitter: @TheBoxingGlove and  

If you are an athlete and want us to follow you or tell your story, contact   or
If you are an author and you would like your book reviewed, contact Peter Silkov at or

No comments:

Post a Comment