A Very American Coup By Michael – Louis Ingram, Editor-in-Chief...
Spinks and Castillo Show Their Age!
Jose Luis Castillo was an old 39 year old fighter up against Antwone Smith for in a crucial fight to determine his boxing future. Castillo has been involved some of the great fights over the past decade including the first Diego Corrales bout, one of the great bouts of all time. Castillo is but a shadow of himself and fighting a weight division some two or three divisions beyond from his peak weight.
Smith was the quicker of the two over the first six minutes and Smith flashy combinations were aided by Smith’s excessive grunting.
Smith had the advantage of landing more punches and throwing more punches and his grunting added to the appearance that his punches being more powerful than they really were. Castillo was not looking to out-work his younger opponent but to time Smith to launch one of his left hook. Castillo lost a point for a low blow in the fourth round but at the end of round, Castillo nailed Smith with a left hook that he followed up with a two more left hooks and right hand.
As the fight progressed, Smith held a slight advantage but he never seemed to have Castillo in trouble and Castillo could land those left hooks to the body and occasionally to the head. During the seventh round, Castillo sat on the rope and while he occasionally landed left hooks off the rope, he absorbed several solid shots from Smith.
Smith jab landed consistently in the eighth round and this allowed him to connect on combinations as Castillo simply could not pull the trigger enough to land those big shots that served him in the past. Smith took over the final two rounds as he performed in a steady fashion whereas Castillo appeared contented to finish as he did not aggressively go after Smith like the old Castillo would have. Smith won an easy decision as he defeated Castillo and Castillo simply didn’t have enough of the old skills to push Smith.
In the main event, the 34year old Cory Spinks was fighting for his career against the slick boxing Carlos Molina, who have had his share of upsets and disappointing losses. Spinks last fight was a knockout lost to Cornelius Bundrage for Bundrage’s title and the former champion now faced possible elimination from any further title contention.
Molina took advantage of couple of Spinks mistake as Spinks moved straight back and got clipped by Molina left hooks. Molina won the first round as he dominated the final minute of the round. Molina continued to pressure Spinks over the next two rounds and found a home with his left hooks to the body with an occasional right hand. Spinks looked every bit of his 34 year old as he never seems to pull the trigger and he was never a great knockout puncher.
Molina looked like he was pitching a shutout for the first half of the fight and at the end of the sixth round, a Molina left hook caught Spinks. Molina followed up that with a right hand before the bell ended the fight. Over the last minute of the seventh round, Molina found a home with his left hook as he managed to pound his opponent body.
Spinks used his head movement to avoid the full impact of Molina’s punches but he had very little room to maneuver as Molina pressured him throughout the eighth round. Spinks lost a point in the ninth round for excessive holding and this gave Molina a 10-8 round.
Throughout the tenth round, Molina landed a variety of punches from left hooks to the body to upper cuts that twisted Spinks head 180 degrees. At the beginning of the eleventh round, a Molina left hook sent Spinks to the canvas but Spinks got up quickly. Molina pounded him for the next minute. As the round progressed, Spinks’ corner was ready to throw the towel in if Spinks showed nothing. Spinks showed enough that allowed him to survive the round.
Spinks was bent on surviving as Molina went on the attack, hoping to end the fight. Spinks used his guile to survive but he was knocked down with 15 seconds left but he managed to beat the count. He ended the fight on his feet. Spinks showed that he was an old 34 years old as Molina connected on more than double of the punches and threw the most meaningful punches. Molina won 11 rounds on two judges and 12 on the other for an easy one-sided victory. For Molina, this was good victory.
Both Castillo and Spinks simply showed that at this stage in their career, the end is near; if not now.