Saturday, November 9, 2013

Nonito Donaire's Power Bails Him Out In The 9th Round Against Vic Darchinyan

Back in 2007, I watched Nonito Donaire walk over Vic Darchinyan, winning every round, and then earn a TKO victory in the 5th round after a devastating left hook that sent Darchinyan to the deck. Coming into tonight's 10 round bout, I thought Darchinyan was in over his head taking on Donaire again. Even though Donaire lost his last fight to Guiellermo Rigondeaux, I believed him to be the fighter with the edge.

However, the fight took a drastically different turn than what I expected. I had them splitting the first and second rounds. But on my card, Vic Darchinyan took rounds 3 through 5 and looked to be on his way to securing a victory. Darchinyan was waiting and wasn't being entirely aggressive as he's had in the past. Darchinyan measured and countered Donaire and looked to be the better boxer through the midway point. But of course, boxing isn't without it's ebbs and flows. Donaire eventually mounted a smarter offense and squeaked out some close rounds, winning rounds 6 through 8 on my scorecards.

Thus like ringside unofficial judge Steve Weisfeld, I had the fight even going into the 9th round.
That's the round that Donaire decided the fight wasn't going to the judges, as Roy Jones Jr. had predicted earlier in the fight. And it was a good thing he didn't. Two judges had Darchinyan winning the fight with no way for Donaire to win on the cards. Donaire put together a fabulous combination, and then nailed Darchinyan with a very similar left hook that sent Darchinyan to the canvas in their first fight. The left hook sent Darchinyan to the canvas, with more than a minute left. Darchinyan got up before the ten count, but his legs never got back under him. Donaire march forward and launched a barrage of punches. Once he had Darchinyan against the ropes, he hammered him with a viscious left, and then followed it up with another left, that Darchinyan guessed was coming to the side of his head again. He dipped low, and leaned his head right into the uppercut Donaire had planned for him and the referee jumped in and stopped the fight. TKO for Donaire.

The fight ended as I predicted with Donaire walking out the victor. Yet, Donaire showed his vulnerability again as he did against Rigondeaux; to be a hittable target to a patient counter punching style. Max Kellerman said it best. He is no longer the Mike Tyson like figure who guys are so afraid to punch at, that he wins all the rounds until he eventually knocks them out. Nonito Donaire is going to have to start earning his wins as he did against Darchinyan their second time around. Hopefully the Filipino Flash has restored his passion for boxing and is ready to climb the pound for pounds ranks again.

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