Gatti Contemplating Retirement Following Loss To Welterweight Champ Baldomir

By Francis Walker
Updated: July 23, 2006

NEW YORK — Arturo Gatti failed in his bid to regain the WBC welterweight championship from Carlos Baldomir on Saturday. 12,763 in attendance at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, NJ were shocked when Baldomir (43-9-6, 13 KOs), not recognized for having punching power, knocked out Gatti (40-8, 31 KOs) at 2:50 into the ninth-round.

It was a surprisingly one-sided victory for Baldomir which may have ultimately sent Gatti into retirement.

“I made good on my promise,” Baldomir stated. I said that I would beat Gatti before the 12th round. I hope that the boxing world knows who I am now, and there will be more to come for me.” Baldomir was a relative unknown 35-year-old fighter from Santa Fe, Argentina before he shocked the world in January following his title victory against Brooklyn, NY’s hometown favorite Zab Judah at Madison Square Garden.

Baldomir stripped Judah of the undisputed world welterweight title and cost Judah millions in his May bout against Floyd Mayweather.

Making the first defense of the WBC 147-pound crown, Baldomir convincingly defeated one of the biggest boxing draws in the last decade – win, lose, or draw.

Gatti, 34, Montreal, Canada, making his twentieth appearance on HBO while fighting his eighth consecutive bout at the famous Boardwalk Hall has staged many great fights in Atlantic City: two of three classic battles against Mickey Ward, an exciting KO of Gabriel Ruelas, Leonard Dorin, Jessie James Leija, two exciting fights against Ivan Robinson and Tracy Harris Patterson, and resounding defeats at the hands of Mayweather and Angel Manfredy at name a few.

Baldomir encountered the Thunderous legend of Gatti. But after so many brutal ring wars through the years, perhaps Baldomir fought a Gatti that has finally ran out of gas.

The career of a great Future Hall of Fame fighter could have met its end. The storybook ending of one fighter could mean the beginning of a new bestseller for another.

It’s called evolution. For every top and well respected and accomplished ring veteran like Gatti, there will always be a young and hungry world champion looking to establish their own legacy. Baldomir is seeking his and he is succeeding.

It appeared as through every punch Baldomir hit Gatti with hurt him. Gatti has been use to absorbing punishment and fighting without his vision throughout his career (Gatti KOed Wilson Rodriguez in five, March 1996).

Baldomir appeared to be the stronger fighter and could have hurt Gatti with either hand. Baldomir was the better boxer, establishing his left jab early in the bout and throwing combinations.

Baldomir was able to land his right hand frequently because Gatti kept his left hand low. Gatti appeared to have hurt his right hand in the sixth round.

It was only a matter of time before Baldomir scored two separate knockdowns with left hooks before stopping Gatti the ninth.

“He is a very strong welterweight,” said Gatti. “Now I know why he beat Zab Judah. Me, as a fighter, I don’t know if I’m ever going to fight again. I had a good time doing it. Thank you for coming out and God bless.”

As for Baldomir, who earned a career-high purse of $1.5 million has his sights set on the man that beat Gatti last year, Floyd Mayweather in November.

Baldimir-Gatti Undercard Giovanni Lorenzo, “The Contender” season one winner and has emerged into an undefeated world middleweight title contender. Lorenzo earned a sixth round TKO over journeyman Bryon Mackie (27-13, 10 KOs) on Saturday.

Lorenzo perhaps solidified a world title shot against undefeated IBF middleweight champion, Jermain Taylor. Taylor’s last three fights have gone the distance (36 rounds).

Taylor ended Bernard Hopkins’ 10-year grasp on the undisputed world middleweight championship in July 2005. Taylor’s first title defense was a more convincing victory over Hopkins in a rematch.

In June, Taylor fought Winky Wright to a 12-round draw.