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Casamayor Vs Corrales II: Bombs Away and Time to Play

March 6, 2004  By Ben Franco / Photo © Brendon Pierpaoli
Anyone hear that? There it goes again, that annoying tick, tick, tick sound coming from my watch which means it’s trying to tell me that it’s time for another slugfest. Let’s just hope that the rematch between Joel Casamayor (30-1 19 KO’s) and Diego Corrales (37-2 31KO’s) lives up to the first all out war.

We have a rematch of a boxer-puncher in Casamayor and the combination slugger in Corrales. Will it be a blow out? Will it be a twelve round snooze fest? Or will we see what will hopefully become one of the fights of 2004, a back and forth, rock-em sock-em rough and tumble affair. It should be a real throwback to the wars of yesteryear, resulting in the cleaning of someone’s clock.

Great fights such as this don’t come along all that often and great rematches are even harder to get. Here are some points about the first fight, and what the keys to victory in the rematch might be.

After six exciting, action filled rounds that saw both guys down and hurt with a total of three knockdowns (two scored by Joel, one by Diego), two severe cuts and pulsating action along the way, the fight was stopped due to the cut Corrales had picked up just on top of his upper right lip area. The cut was due to a scorching left cross, delivered courtesy of “El Cepio”. From all reports this was helped due to one of his corner men slicing a piece off the mouthpiece with scissors prior to the fight commencing leaving a sharp part exposed to the soft tissues of the mouth, and of course the express delivery of leather to the above mentioned area.

While it was a bad cut in an even badder place I have seen worse let go and Diego should have been given another round to try and close the show as Casamayor was clearly the more hurt of the pair despite being in front on the scorecards at the time of the stoppage. That being said, if the officials had let it continue and Joel had systematically removed Diego’s lips, then there wouldn’t have been any chance of it happening in the near future, let alone at all due to the severity of the cuts that could have occurred. I had the fight 58-54 Casamayor at the time of the stoppage but with that extra round, well we will never know what might have been. But on the flipside, we’ve got ourselves a brand new, ready made war about to erupt and spew forth big left hooks and powerful left crosses right onto our front doorsteps.

For Casamayor to win this time he has to box more, especially behind his jab with a lot of lateral movement and constantly looking to land his ‘get out of jail free’ shot, his straight left cross, which resulted with both of his knockdowns of “Chico”. If Joel decides to slug it out with Diego too soon then this is a fight I feel he will lose, badly. This is exactly the type of fight Corrales wants, to slug it out.

He knows that he’s physically stronger than Casamayor with the superior punching power and although he was down twice, it was Casamayor who was on his bike and hurt as the fight was stopped. That being said this could be Corrales’ weakness, his willingness to slug at the drop of a hat. If Corrales forgets to come in behind the jab, boxing and exploiting Joel to the body it could be another touch-up with Corrales eating leather all night.

The trainers and training situation might play as big a part in the result of this fight, especially with the change in the training conditions and some simmering animosity between the camps, as the fighters themselves. For a start Casamayor has disbanded his longtime association with Joe Goosen in order to hook up with former two-division champion and rising trainer Buddy McGirt on the advice of his manager Luis De Cubas. Good move some might say, but I beg to differ, especially if the guy who has trained you for most of your professional career is suddenly employed by the guy looking to decapitate you. This is the current predicament faced by Casamayor.

He is going up against his former friend and trainer who has been employed by the guy he is facing on Saturday and who unceremoniously dumped him on the seat of his pants with one of the best left hooks possibly seen in the junior lightweight division, not to mention having him in big trouble at the end of the sixth round. This is obviously a big mental hurdle that Casamayor will have to negate his way over in order to post another victory against Corrales.

On the other side Corrales must feel like he has won the lottery. Here is the guy who helped orchestrate the minor beating you were receiving now putting the building blocks in place for a famous return victory over the guy who was beating you the first time. Not to mention all the little character traits and the in’s and out’s that make Joel tick. Joe Goosen will surely instruct Corrales to box a little more and mix up his attack, something he didn’t really do in the first fight, but must do for this fight in order to be successful.

So far it seems like most of the positives are for Corrales with the proverbial set of black clouds already forming on the Casamayor horizon. But this is the sport of boxing and anything can and will most likely happen and it’s not just any sport, but the greatest sport that God ever put breath into.

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