Leading up to the fight with Vic Darchinyan (39-6-1), many said it was exactly what Nonito Donaire (32-2) needed coming off of his Unanimous decision loss to Guillermo Rigondeaux, and substantial layoff with a shoulder surgery and the birth of his new baby.
What many didn’t consider was that Vic would come in this rematch 7 years later and give Nonito a fight!! A fight that I had him ahead on right up to the knockout in the 8th round!
Nonito “the Fillipino Flash” Came out in the first round and executed a game plan, he was looking to counter Vic Darchinyan and did so effectively, the fight was relatively boring though most of the second round, but then a very catious Darchinyan let his hands go and nailed Donaire with two solid lefts to close out the second!! The fight had changed tides and it felt as though Darchinyan had found a small chink in the armor of Donaire in that if he didnt charge in and open himself up for counter shots he could pot shot him in moments, and get his hands off first and then get out just as quickly! He was executing the game plan that Guillermo had used in Donaire’s previous fight and was using it effectively for much of the night!
Vic continued in rounds 3-7 of effectively landed his overhand left and it seemed as though Nonito had nothing in return. Vic would land a couple of punches and then get out of harms way before Nonito could return fire and land one of his patented left hooks!! It really looked as though Nonito was looking for that one shot to land and was forgetting to box, and was out boxed continuously though the middle rounds, all of which most would argue that Darchinyan won!
The 8th round we saw what made Nonito Donaires’s nickname a household name in 2012, he began to pump the jab in to Darchniyans face and then followed it with a huge left hook that wobbled Darchniyan. It was very reminicent of their previous fight (although Donaire never lost a round in that fight in way to a 5th round KO). With a small flurry in which Donaire was measuring his punches and smashing Vics Face with hard power shots, the ref stepped in and put an end to the fight, in a very good stoppage as Vic’s legs were wobbly and he was clearly done! Donaire said after the fight that he wanted “Max’s Boy” , speaking of the aforementioned Guillermo Rigondeaux, in a rematch that wont sell to many PPV’s but will surely be a great fight of skills. It will be interresting to see if Donaire can get past the very defensive, and quick Rigondeaux.
It doesnt seem as though Donaire is all the way back to his 2012 form, in which he was named Fighter of the Year, but with more training and a showdown looming, it will be interresting to see where the champ goes from here!! Will Rigondeaux give him the rematch? Will the Flash be the Flash again? All those questions and more will surely be answered in 2014!!