#360view: Shades of Chavez in Canelo's impressive numbers

Andy Lewis 19/11/2015
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Mexican hero: Saul Alvarez.

In Mexican boxing there is simply no greater legend than Julio Cesar Chavez.

– MMA: Holm knocks out Rousey to take title

– UAE: Pacquiao talks basketball, boxing & politics at DXB

– Philippine Cup: Pacquiao fails to find shooting touch
– BOXING: Pacquiao sets sights on 2016 retirement

Chavez was a six-time world champion in three weight divisions, and in a 25-year career established himself one of the sport’s all-time greats. Statistically, at the very least, he’s a boxing phenom. His 27 world title defences is a record, as is his total of 31 title fight victories and 37 title bout appearances.

Chavez’s record was 89–0 with one drawn going into his first official loss to Frankie Randall in 1994.

When he retired in 2005, aged 43, his final record was 107-6-2 and nobody could have envisaged anyone coming close to replicating those staggering numbers.

It is rare for modern fighters to get near a half century.

Look at the fuss surrounding the recently retired Floyd Mayweather and his potential return in a bid to go 50-0. That in turn shines a light on Chavez’s achievements. He was 49-0 when he was 23.

This Saturday Chavez will be an interested spectator when another Mexican boxing prodigy steps into the ring for his 48th fight, at the age of just 25.

It is perhaps a little strong to talk about Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez as the second coming of Chavez, but his is the type of record rarely seen these days. Health permitting, a fighter who started his career aged 15, could go on to push near to a century of prizefights.

Of his 47 to date, Canelo has won 45 of them. He has just one loss (to Mayweather), while he has a split draw on his record from a four-rounder in his fifth pro bout.

When Chavez was the same age, he was 55-0. Alvarez may not ever quite replicate his sheer numerical weight, but he has emulated him in becoming his nation’s foremost boxing icon, and a victory over Miguel Cotto in Las Vegas on Saturday can help Canelo on his way to joining him among the absolute elite of all-time Mexican greats.

His duel with Mayweather came too early in his career and let’s not forget Floyd made him boil down to 152lbs. That’s not easy for a naturally big light-middleweight, who will in all likelihood spend the vast majority of his career from here on up a class at 160lbs.

But if Canelo needed a marquee night to show how much he has matured and moved on from that solitary defeat, then he has the perfect opportunity this weekend.

You get the feeling that this is very much his time, and if he picks up the WBC title, it opens the door to more blockbuster fights down the line.

How about this for a scenario? Canelo beats Cotto, but the proud Puerto Rican digs in and makes it a compelling spectacle to earn a rematch. Meanwhile, Andy Lee beats Billy Joe Saunders next month but loses his WBO belt to Gennady Golovkin early next year.

At the same time, Canelo comes through the Cotto rematch and then faces Golovkin late in 2016 with all four major belts on the line.

Too good to be true? Perhaps, but not entirely out of the question.

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The internet wins again as fan gives Ronda Rousey’s Wikipedia page a makeover

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well beaten: Ronda Rousey (l) vs Holly holm.

Sunday’s UFC 193 event saw Ronda Rousey lose the first fight of her career, the dethroned bantamweight champ on the receiving end of a battering from Holly Holm.

Rousey was left red faced in more ways than one, as Holm left her chasing shadows.

That wasn’t all, as one fan took it upon themselves to modify her Wikipedia page in rather harsh fashion.

– MMA: Holm knocks out Rousey to take title
– UAE: Pacquiao talks basketball, boxing & politics at DXB
– Philippine Cup: Pacquiao fails to find shooting touch

Early reports suggested Rousey suffered a broken jaw and had concussion after being rushed to hospital after the fight, but UFC president Dana White was quick to quash those rumours on Twitter.

Rousey herself took to Instagram to say all was well with her despite the defeat.

Here is the Wikipedia post in question.

WARNING! This post contains offensive language.

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Fight Club: Rousey failed to answer the questions Holm asked

Alex Rea 16/11/2015
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Landing blows: Holm.

There is a saying that some people use in the MMA world that if you’ve never lost, you’re not fighting the right people. Ronda Rousey typifies that.

– MMA: Holm knocks out Rousey to take title
– UAE: Pacquiao talks basketball, boxing & politics at DXB
– Philippine Cup: Pacquiao fails to find shooting touch
– BOXING: Pacquiao sets sights on 2016 retirement

The 28-year-old boasted a record of 12 fights without defeat coming into UFC 193 at Melbourne’s Etihad Stadium. In her previous six defences of the bantamweight crown, she had been taken beyond the first round just once, by Miesha Tate in their rematch in 2013.

Her last three fights had lasted a combined one minute and 47 seconds and quite simply, she was the world’s most feared female prizefighter.

Arguably, though, that was her downfall as American Holly Holm proved that no one is safe in mixed martial arts.

Rousey is one of the most skilled fighters in UFC and her record more than backs that up. But the women’s divisions suffer from a lack of top level talent that could challenge a fighter of her skill level.

And she knew that. Most of Rousey’s opponents are beaten before the bell even rings, intimidated by her reputation and her string of quick finishes.

By shattering the champion with a vicious KO in the second round most will label Holm’s victory as the biggest upset in UFC history.

But for the 34-year-old’s camp it’s not all that surprising. She is one of the most decorated strikers in all of MMA following an incredible boxing career, complete with a 33-2-3 record and a world title.

Since switching to MMA four years ago, her ground game has left much to be desired and many believed coming in against a champion who had beaten half of her opponents by armbar, grappling would prove to be the difference.

Regardless, though, Holm was always expected to ask questions Rousey had never answered before.

Her stand-up game is so refined and her footwork so superior she was always going to cause problems. And so it would prove.

After Rousey refused to touch gloves, she looked to get inside and avoid that dangerous snapping jab of Holm’s. But the tone of the fight quickly became apparent when she was caught with a left hand almost immediately.

Holm was happy to let Rousey chase her around the Octagon but when the latter took the fight to the canvas that air of invincibility returned. Holm, though, simply wriggled free and returned to her feet.

She clearly took points in the first round as her overhand lefts landed flush on Rousey’s ever reddening face. She had Rousey staggering in the second round with some crunching left hooks, before finishing her off with a left-foot kick that landed flush under the champion’s jaw.

It appeared Rousey was close to unconsciousness as she dropped. Holm followed up with a few strikes before the referee stopped the fight, with Rousey looking considerably the worse for wear.

“I had so much love and support – I thought how could I not do this,” Holm said in the ring. “There was lots of blood, sweat and tears, but it sure was worth it.

“I’m trying to take this in, but this is crazy. Everything that we worked on presented itself in the fight.

“Every kind of grab that she tried to get… I have not spent this much time in the gym before any fight in my life… Everything we worked on happened tonight.”

UFC president Dana White later confirmed Rousey had been taken to hospital suffering from concussion and a cut lip and he added: “The rematch makes a lot of sense, it’s what people want to see. It changes a lot of things.” 

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