One thing that makes boxing more intriguing is that we always root for the boxer who is an underdog, a tiny little chance of winning and who is way below the physical attributes of his opponent.
It has something to do with our daily lives. Something that we strive everyday just to make both ends meet. A Cinderella story that we wanted to end with a “happy ever after”. That’s why “Rocky” was a famous boxing movie because almost everybody can relate their experiences to it. A feel-good movie that makes you simply felt better after a tired day of work or after being beaten down to pulp by your bosses who made impossible demands. At the end of the day we always want to be the victor. The person who raises up his hands in the air and shout to the world “I told you so”.
2010 has been such a long and winding road. Although there isn’t much of a Cinderella story but we all hope everything ends with a “happy ever after”.
Allow me to enumerate the top ten boxing upsets of the year.
10. Nate Campbell lost to Walter Estrada.
– Ok Nate’s career after his lost against Victor Ortiz was going downhill. At age 36, he conquered what nobody expected he could win against an uprising superstar in Juan Diaz. After that bout, he was always part of the talk on Manny Pacquiao’s next opponent. But this year he went up against an unknown boxer who fights mostly on his hometown in Columbia. Walter Estrada is no Juan Diaz, in fact, he was only four years younger than Nate at age 34. The fight of the older statesmen and the younger one prevails. It was an upset but it was expected as Nate finally hanged his gloves for good.
9. Brian Viloria lost Carlos Tamara.
-Viloria was the defending champion and fought Tamara on his own turf. It was just like a prelude to a much bigger event, a sparring session to boost Viloria’s record. However, nobody informed Tamara about his script. As he scored a stunning come from behind TKO right in front of a shock hometown crowd. Brian was leading in all judge scorecards until fatigue took over and faded out in the later rounds.
8. Celestino Caballero lost to Jason Litzau.
-Caballero is a highly ranked Featherweight fighter. He was a prospect for future bouts against Juan Manuel Lopez and Yuriorkis Gamboa. He is a natural freak of nature with a 5-foot-11 in height and a 72 inch reach, and he is mostly campaigning in the super bantam division with a weight limit of 122 pounds. However, after losing to Jason Litzau all of those future fights went down the drain.
7. Vic Darchinyan lost to Abner Mares.
– We all thought it was a short night for Vic Darchinyan when he dropped Abner Mares in the second round. However, it was a long and exciting match with Mares returning the favor in round seven. Mares won a split decision and a chance to fight for the overall champion in the bantamweight division against Joseph Agbeko.
6. Sergio Martinez beats Kelly Pavlik
– After an impressive but losing effort on his fight against Paul Williams, Sergio challenged Kelly Pavlik for the WBC, WBO and Ring titles in the middleweight division. Nobody thought he would win the fight after an early knockdown. However, Sergio stayed in the ring and dominated Pavlik in the later rounds awarding him a unanimous decision nod on all the judges scorecards.
5. Arthur Abraham lost to Andre Dirrel.
– The former undefeated Abraham was dominated from start to finish against Andre Dirrel in the super-six tournament. Abraham was the crowd’s favorite going to the match but was clearly outclassed by Dirrel’s hand speed and footwork, knocking down Abraham early in the match. In the 11th round, Dirrel slipped to the canvas and while he was down, Abraham landed his best punch of the night, knocking down Dirrel cold. Andre won that fight via disqualification.
4. Miguel Cotto bounces back against Yuri Foreman
-After the Pacquiao fight, it looks like Miguel Cotto’s career is coming to an end. But instead of staying in the dark corner and doing nothing he moved up to the light middleweight division challenging Yuri Foreman’s WBA belt. It was a gutsy move considering he is fighting an undefeated champion who weighs so much bigger than him in fight night. He won via a ninth round TKO and not only scored an upset but bounce back to the elite pound per pound ratings.
3. Rocky Juarez career
– Rocky Juarez career have been riddled with upsets all throughout. This year he lost to Jorge Linares and Jason Litzau. He has the heart and the talent to become a champion and he works doubly hard in training. However, in championship bouts a different Juarez goes in the ring. He fought good fighters such as Marco Antonio Barrera and Humberto Soto and went to the distance with them. There are still a lot left on this 30 year old fighter and if not this year maybe next or maybe never.
2. Jean Pascal upsets Chad Dawson.
-The fight was for the WBC, IBO and the vacant Ring Magazine light heavyweight titles. It was Dawson’s third defense for his IBO title and Pascal’s also third defense for his WBC belt. The former undefeated Dawson was the heavy favorite going through the fight with some key wins against Antonio Tarver (twice) and Glen Johnson and a pound per pound top ten fighter. But he was surprisingly tentative on fight night with Pascal building a comfortable lead by outworking and outhustling him throughout the fight until the fight was stopped on an accidental headbutt. It ended with a technical decision win in favor of Pascal and will be defending his titles this time against the veteran Bernard Hopkins.
1. Sergio Martinez knocks Paul Williams out.
-Martinez top the list by knocking out Paul Williams in their rematch last November 20. It wasn’t much of a surprise since Martinez could have won in their first bout against Williams. However, the manner he dismantled Williams with a timed left hook was so devastating that it took Williams five minutes to regain consciousness. We all know Paul was the most feared fighter in his division because of his height and his freakish reach. But Sergio made true to his claim in knocking Williams out on their rematch. He knows the decision could go against him that’s why he got justice on his own hands… literally.