A Boxing Weekend Of Extremes

By Tom Donelson
Updated: April 13, 2008

GlovesIOWA CITY, Ia. — Last Saturday night, Chad Dawson and Antonio Tarver survived the first round of could be a series of elimination bouts to crown the one true light heavyweight champion.

Right now that title belongs to Bernard Hopkins and he faces a big challenge in keeping that title this Saturday when he faces Joe Calzaghe.

Dawson won a tight decision against Glen “The Road Warrior” Johnson in a bout that many observers felt could have gone the other direction. Glen Johnson, who has beaten Clint Woods, Antonio Tarver and Roy Jones, showed that at the age of 39; there was something left in the tank.

Going toe to toe with his younger foe, Johnson showed Dawson what it takes to be a champion and Dawson found enough in the end to keep his portion of the light heavyweight belt.

As for Tarver, he defeated a game Clint Woods but the real winner was boxing. This is what boxing suppose to be, the top fighters fighting the top fighters. And after the fight, Tarver called out Dawson in a fight that should be made.

What this evening did was eliminate two of the top light heavyweights from the title picture and now we await the winner of Calzaghe-Hopkins.

Meanwhile, Miguel Cotto fought the former Contender star Alfonso Gomez. After the first round, it was self evident who the better fighter was. Alfonso Gomez has proved to be an entertaining good fighter.

But Gomez is only a good fighter not a great one and certainly, he is not among the Welterweight elite and after being pounded for five rounds; the fight was stopped. Gomez hit the canvas three times and showed the heart of a champion but he did not have the skills of one.

Cotto is one of the best Welterweights, exceeded only by Floyd Mayweather.

Antonio Margarito did to Kermit Cintron what he did the first time, knocked him out. In their first match three years ago, Cintron was a rising star but Margarito battered him for five rounds before stopping the game Puerto Rican.

This fight was similar to the first with Margarito dominating the action with his ferocious body shots, power and endurance. Margarito at his best is a punching machine that keeps coming forward and blessed with a great chin, Margarito rarely is deterred from his final objective.

In the sixth round, Margarito ended the fight with a right to the head and left to the body. Cintron could not beat the count and the fight ended. For Cintron, he lost his portion of the championship.

As for Margarito, he put himself in line for a shot at Miguel Cotto. In a perfect world, Cotto would be preparing for Mayweather but Margarito victory put him in line for a multi-million dollar pay day while Mayweather forces others in his divison to wait.

For Cintron, his star is fading but for Puerto Ricans, Cotto has now ascended to the top and his star is still flaming brightly.

This weekend saw one young star escaped to continue on his quest to be the best in the light heavyweight and another young star doing what stars are supposed to do; win in brutally decisive matter.

This weekend also saw two old stars’ career be regenerated as Tarver and Margarito put themselves in solid position to find one more shot at championship glory.