Nonito Donaire-Rafael Concepcion post fight

Rafael Concepcion came into this fight already half defeated. He weighed-in the day before four and a half pounds over the 115 lbs. limit. Because of this he had to pay the fine equivalent to 20% of his purse. This translates to $13,000.00, half of which went to Team Donaire. To top it all off because he did not make the weight, even if he wins, he would not be eligible to claim the belt.

Concepcion could just go through the motion of finishing the fight and collect his remaining pay-check or he could go all out and gain bragging rights by beating Nonito Donaire. At the start of the bell, he looked like he chose the latter.

There was also more to this fight than meets the eye. Beyond the obvious advantages in speed and power that Donaire has plus the apparent lack in skill of the Panamanian, the big disparity in weight was a big variable to the outcome of the bout.

Donaire, as expected came in as his usual prowling self, simply waiting for openings to tag the forward moving Concepcion. However, he also found himself at the receiving end being clipped by heavy blows from the Panamanian opponent. Donaire this time did not finish the fight unscathed. He had a welt on his left cheek apparently due to the heavy although few left hooks thrown by Concepcion.

Because Concepcion looked more like a super-featherweight (130 lbs) than a super flyweight, he was simply taking and absorbing Donaire’s power punches. Some of which would have definitely floored him if he made weight.

One could not help but think that the ploy as intentional. Concepcion in the post fight interview took some pot shots at Donaire implying that the Filipino ran more than he boxed. It would certainly have been a different kind of fight because Donaire would have to take on heavier punches.

Aside from being skilful, fast and well-trained, Donaire also proved that he is a thinking fighter. He moved, slipped, backpedalled when he needed to just to get away from the punches of Concepcion. After-all, the first rule of boxing is not to get hit. Donaire then began establishing a rhythm by double jab combinations not allowing “El Torrito” to push forward and would counter with his left hook when the moment called for it.

Donaire acknowledged that he had a hard time against Concepcion and reiterated that the additional weight prevented him from knocking Concepcion out. He threw enough power punches but failed to send his opponent to the canvas. Unfortunately also, in doing so, Donaire once again hurt his left hand.

After 12 rounds of boxing the “Filipino Flash” won on all three scorecards, posted an accuracy ratio of over seventy percent and brings home the interim WBA Super-flyweight belt.

Nonito’s first campaign in the 115 lbs. weight category proved to be difficult but successful nonetheless. It was a good thing that he was ready for the onslaught of the durable and game Rafael Concepcion.

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