Bantamweight battle: The trilogy
When it comes to the movies, the finale of a trilogy can be hit or miss. You have the good (
What do you like about boxing? I'll tell you what I like: Two men come into the ring looking, nay,
Neither Marquez nor Vazquez harbor any such fears. In their first fight Marquez, a former bantamweight champion who moved up to super bantamweight last year to challenge Vazquez for his title, stunned the champion with an onslaught of devastating combinations that eventually shattered Vazquez's nose, cutting off his airway and forcing his corner to throw in the towel after the seventh round.
In the rematch five months later it was Vazquez securing a measure of revenge when he reclaimed the title with a sixth-round knockout. The victory, however, did not come cheap: Vazquez spent much of the fight in fear of having it stopped after Marquez's cannonball sized fists left Vazquez's face bloodied.
"You know I don't want to get too emotional and talk like a promoter," says Marquez's promoter,
So with so much at stake in the third fight Saturday at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif., (Showtime, 9 p.m.) and with both men having tasted the power of the other, perhaps the final chapter between the two will be more boxing than brawling.
Then again ... maybe not.
"I don't see anything that's going to be different," says Marquez's trainer,
Says Marquez, "All I can tell you is that it will not go 12 rounds."
It's unfortunate that the spotlight is not shining brighter on these two super bantamweights. For the average American male, 122 pounds is something he used to weigh, not a division in boxing. But over the past few years both Marquez and Vazquez have become two of the sports' best pound-for-pound champions. After claiming the bantamweight title from
Boxing (unlike the movies) rarely creates a fourth installment, and Marquez-Vazquez will be no different. Vazquez eyes moving up to featherweight, while Marquez says he will eventually look to unify the division, which is a winded way of saying that both men know what's at stake Saturday night. "The winner of this fight is going to be the public [champion]," says Vazquez. "This fight is for the people. That's why we're doing it."
Thanks to their warrior-like mentalities, you can be sure the people are going to be pleased.