2010 Boxing accolades, International and local

Boxer of the Year honors go to two gentleman:

The Sergio Martinez versus Kelly Pavlik fight was an all out war.

First, Sergio Martinez (46-2-2, 25 KOs), the world middleweight champion, who first defeated Kelly Pavlik (36-1-0) on April 17 and then KO’d Paul Williams (39-1-0) on November 20th.

And second, there’s no way we can ignore Juan Manuel Lopez’s achievements in 2010. Lopez (30-0-0, 27 KOs) defended his featherweight title against three very tough opponents,

Juan Manuel Lopez

Steven Luevano in January, Bernabe Concepcion in July and Rafael Marquez in November. All three were unable to go the distance.

Honorable mention goes to:

Romanian southpaw Lucian Bute (27-0-0) who defended his Super Middleweight Title twice with KO wins over the very tough Edison Miranda (33-4-0) and Jesse Brinkley (35-5-0).

Humberto Soto (right) lands a big overhand right on the helpless David Diaz.

And Humberto Soto (54-7-2, 32 KOs), the WBC Lightweight Champion, who fought four times, all were unanimous decision victories, against David Diaz in March, Ricardo Dominquez in  May, Fidel Monterrosa Munoz in September and Urbano Antillon in December.


Fight of the Year

After the Amir Khan vs. Marcos Maidana fight, referee Joe Cortez (center) received a lot of criticism for how he interacted with the boxers. Here we see Amir Khan (right) holding and Cortez did nothing to stop the illegal tactic.

Amir Khan’s dramatic survival win on December 11 over Marcos Rene Maidana. Two body shots dropped Maidana to his knees near the end of the first round. Somehow he managed to survive. Khan was in control of the fight through the fourth. Then referee Joe Cortez deducted a point from Maidana in the fifth, after Maidana threw an elbow which hit Cortez in the chest as he was attempting to break up a clinch. Maidana was in desperation mode from there on out and landed a huge shot early in the tenth round, which had Kahn wobbly and in serious trouble. Kahn managed to hang on and survive the round. In the 11th and 12th Maidana went all out to finish Khan, but somehow Khan persevered.

Honorable mention goes to both:

Rendall Munroe’s TKO victory in the ninth round over Victor Terrazas, April 23, at the Skydome in Coventry, West Midlands, United Kingdom. Terrazas won the first four rounds on points with quick, head snapping jabs while staying on the outside. From round five on, Munroe’s body attacks began to wear Terrazas down, and the fight became a nonstop brawl. By round seven, Munroe’s jab, combinations and body attacks had Terrazas fighting off the ropes and tiring. Frequent hooks from Munroe began to get through, and by round eight, Terrazas was taking a lot of punishment. In the ninth, a left hook to the body put Terrazas on his knees unable to get up forcing an end to the contest.

Abner Mares (left) was able to outfox Vic Darchinyan (right), the big puncher

And Vic Darchinyan’s non-stop battle with Abner Mares in the first stage of Showtime’s Bantamweight title showdown. Mares was down once in the second round and had a point deducted in the fourth for a low blow; Mares kept coming and Darchinyan went down once in round seven. Mares ended up securing a split decision victory.

Knockout of the Year

After Saul Alvarez (right) lands his big knockout blow, referee Jose Cobian gets in position to begin the 10 count on Carlos Baldomir.

Saul Alvarez’s sixth round KO of Carlos Baldomir, September 18, in Los Angeles.

And Sergio Martinez’s second round KO of Paul Williams, November 20, in Atlantic City.

Comebacks of the year:

Hozumi Hasegawa, featherweight world champion
Erik Morales, WBC Silver light welterweight title
Edgar Sosa, International flyweight champion

Controversial decision of the year:

Rodel Mayol’s win by technical decision in the third round over Omar Niño Romero on Feb. 27, in Guadalajara, Mexico. The decision was later changed to a draw. In round three, Niño hit Mayol with a low blow and while Mayol was waiting for referee Vic Drakulich to step in, Niño threw a left hook that knocked Mayol out cold.

Biggest gaffe of the year:

After committing the foul, Arthur Abraham (right) looks about for support but no one is willing to overlook his dastardly deed.

Andre Dirrell won by disqualification on March 27th in Detroit, Michigan in the eleventh round of Showtime’s Super Six Super Middleweight competition after Arthur Abraham, clearly on his way to finishing off Dirrell, inexplicably hit Dirrell while he was down.

Biggest Event of the Year:

Manny Pacquiao versus Antonio Margarito, November 13, Cowboys Stadium in Dallas, Texas. The much smaller but accomplished boxer proves it is possible to overcome an opponent’s weight, height and reach advantage and defeat him soundly. The busy bee kept stinging the charging lion.

Toss-up for San Diego County Boxer of the Year:

Chris Martin of the Alliance Training Center in Chula Vista had five fights in 2010, all wins over Yogli Herrera, Jose Luis Araiza, Chris Avalos, Adolfo Landeros, and Ruben Lopez. Together his opponents had a combined record of 102-35-2. The people of Showtime’s Showbox: the Next Generation maintained Martin was a huge underdog in their feature bout on August 6 against their big puncher Christopher Matthew Avalos. Martin showed them and all the viewers how wrong they were and gave the cocky Avalos a boxing lesson.

Also deserving is Chris Chatman of City Boxing Downtown. Chatman had four wins in 2010. He received a unanimous decision victory over the undefeated lefty Lester Gonzalez in November, stopped the undefeated Alberto Herrera in the fourth round in October and beat Steve Macomber twice, once in February and again in April.

Here we see Chris Chatman (left) knocking Steve Macomber (right) off his feet in their April meeting at the Four Points by Sheration Hotel in San Diego.

Wherever he goes, Chatman never fails to put on a show. On one occasion he actually hit an opponent by wrapping his arm around his back. While his actions have upset his coaching staff, onlookers are fascinated by his tomfoolery.

San Diego County Fight of the Year: Up until late June, the bloody battle between Ibahiem King and Lester Gonzalez had been considered the prime candidate for Fight of the Year and then on September 10, two boxers with almost identical builds and similar styles met, 24 year-old Luis Grajeda (10-0) of Chihuahua, Chihuahua, Mexico and 19 year-old Alan Sanchez (5-2) of Fairfield, CA. Despite being knocked off his feet twice, once in round two and again in round six, Grajeda managed to counter just enough to confound the judges who all scored the bout 75-75 for the draw.

The Luis Grajeda (left) and Alan Sanchez (right) matchup produced San Diego's Fight of the Year.

Knockout of the Year from a San Diego fighter: On August 20, Mercito “No Mercy” Gesta made San Diegans proud when he scored a seventh round knockout of Genaro Trazancos (22-11-1, 13 KO’s) at the Casino Del Sol in Tucson, Arizona. Gesta, a southpaw, used a straight left hand to lay Trazancos out on the canvas for the ten count.

After one of Mercito Gesta's big wins, Vince Parra, his proud coach, raises the boxer high overhead.

Controversial decision (locally): The Rubén “Canelito” Tamayo versus Jesús “Chino” Badillo “draw” decision on July 24 across the border in Tijuana remains a mystery. From the outset of the fight, Badillo decided to fight from long-range. That meant it was up to Tamayo to slow him down and cut off the ring. Well, Tamayo did his best but he just couldn’t slow down the quick moving merry-go-round. People in the crowd started calling Badillo “the runner.” How you come up with a draw when one guy is running the entire fight is beyond me.

Local Comeback of the year: On November 18, James Parison of the Gutierrez Gym in South San Diego made his return to the ring after a year lay-off. He showed no rust at all as he completely destroyed his opponent, Loren Myers of Fresno, CA. to get an early stoppage in the second round and improve his record to 12-1-0, with 4 KOs.

(Left to right) coach David Gutierrez, James Parison, father Max Gutierrez and assistant coach Juan Medina.

Eighty-four former boxers passed on in 2010:

None more tragic than the accidental death of young Felix Castro of Chula Vista via Tijuana who choked on a bottle cap.

Following a late night boxing workout, the beloved boxing coach Hector Gil was shot to death in his Vista, CA. gym.

There were rumors Edwin Valero (left), shown here delivering a blow to Antonio De Marco's head, was using mind altering drugs at the time of his unfortunate demise.

The most puzzling death involved Edwin Valero, the lightweight champ. Valero was arrested after police found the body of his 24-year-old wife Jennifer Viera in their room at the Intercontinental Hotel in Valencia, Venezuela. Valero left the hotel around dawn and told security he had killed his wife, whose body was later discovered with three stab wounds. This came just weeks after he was accused of hitting her and agreeing to attend anger-management rehabilitation. Valero subsequently committed suicide the next day in his jail cell by hanging himself with the sweatpants he was wearing.

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