A few good fights rounded out the conclusion of this spring's boxing season, but a particular one did not. That bout was to be a championship decider between WBA Heavyweight Champion Nikolai Valuev and Ruslan Chagaev, the "Champion in recess" (no really, that's the title bestowed to him by the WBA, since he hasn't been able to defend quite often, as to be explained). The scrappy Chagaev whupped on the giant Valuev in 2007 to take his belt and undefeated record and the latter has wanted the title back ever since. However, Chagaev is rather injury/mishap-prone, causing their rematch to be hampered on more than just this occasion. In the meantime, Valuev defeated John Ruiz to claim the WBA belt as a co-holder, with the just-cancelled rematch to determine the one true champion. After the latest call-off, Valuev's promoter, Don King, wants Chagaev stripped of his (pseudo-)title and his man crowned the real champion. The cause this time? A positive blood test for hepatitis that Chagaev and Universum have refuted.
The funny thing is, I saw the fight scheduled, but not only did I scoff at it (given Chagaev...), I also forgot to list it. I guess it was a pre-subconscious thing...
[C] Anthony Mundine SD IBO Middleweight Champion Daniel Geale
--A bit of controversy beset this close contest, as is often the case with split decisions, as some believed that Geale deserved the victory. And like a good number of SD-fights, it sounded like a very good one...
[C] WBC Welterweight Champion Andre Berto vs Juan Urango [HBO]
--I was a mild believer in Berto as a viable champion, but some of what I was able to see might have me changing my mind. His skill, tenacity, speed, and agility were very good and he showed good ring generalship in corralling the stronger, pressing (to a fault) Urango.
Kermit Cintron UD Alfredo Angulo (Light Middleweight) [HBO]
--I was a little unsure about who would win this bout--the more experienced, but underachieving Cintron or the more promising, but less experienced Angulo. The answer looked to be pretty clear, as Cintron showed much improvement from his pitiful fight earlier in the year against Sergio Martinez and displayed some nifty boxing skills and brains in totally controlling the too-green Angulo. That's what you get for placing a 15-0 fighter against someone with more than double that in wins, even if that opponent was still a questionable commodity. Angulo clearly needs more work (and will hopefully use Sat. night as a learning experience), but on the flip side, Cintron has suddenly bought himself a new lease on his career.
Not Previously Mentioned
:Fri.05.29.09: Yonnhy Perez TKO12 Silence Mabuza (Bantamweight)
--Previously listed as "nixed" in an April "Boxing Bits", the fight would take place on May 29th...
:Sat.05.30.09: Yusef Mack TKO4 DeAndrey Abron (Light Heavyweight)