Los Angeles, CA- WBO super bantamweight (122 lb.) champion¬†Nonito Donaire (31-1, 20 KOs), a native of the Philippines, residing now in San Leandro, CA, faces a “Catch 22” situation Saturday night in HBO’s main event when he faces decorated Cuban amateur and WBA 122 lb. counterpart Guillermo Rigondeaux (11-0, 8 KOs).

Rigondeaux Could Be Kryptonite To Donaire


If he defeats the former two-time Olympic Gold medalist its possible he won’t get the credit he deserves due to Rigondeaux’s lack of professional experience, limited profile and minuscule fan base. If he loses, future fights become less lucrative and detractors who believe Donaire has been fighting handpicked opponents will be vindicated. The biggest problem here is that Rigondeaux has a style that most likely can make Donaire look bad, be it winning or losing.



Hardcore boxing fans have been looking forward to this bout for the last year. It appears to be a toss up, at least on paper. The Filipino looked stellar in 2012, winning four times, beating some of the top guys at 122; Wilfredo Vasquez Jr.(22-3-1, 19 KOs), Jeffrey Mathebula (27-4-2,14 KOs), Toshiaki Nishioka (39-5-3, 24 KOs) and Jorge Arce (61-7-2, 46 KOs). However Saturday for quite possibly the first time in his career, Donaire’s facing a fighter with comparable hand speed and power. Rigondeaux, who won reportedly near 400 amateur bouts has arguably better footwork and superior defense. While the Cuban’s resume is somewhat limited in comparison it can be said that fighters such as Arce and Nishioka were well past their prime. In the Cuban’s last fight he faced the 23 year old Roberto Marroquin (23-2, 16 KOs). What Marroquin lacked in experience he made up for in youth. In dominating the taller much bigger Marroquin, who stunned the Cuban on one occasion, it showed he had no problem fighting someone with a significant reach and size advantage. Rigondeaux was able to put him on the canvas twice and has knocked down all of his eleven opponents. Can he put Donaire on his back as well?


There are many variables here to consider. The Filipino’s best punch is his left hook, a punch that is difficult to land versus southpaws such as Rigondeaux. Donaire also tends to lunge in with his shots, many times leaving himself open to counter punches. Rigondeaux suffers from a low punch output, and it is possible that the Filipino will be able to steal rounds with his flashier punches, even if the shots don’t land clean he may be able to put the Cuban on the defensive more often than not. Both are smart fighters with a good skill-set, the advantage goes to the Cuban in that department. Donaire is likely the bigger puncher. The question here is will the Filipino be able to land consistently without taking his fair share of punishment. Rigondeaux’s best asset is being able to control the pace of a fight with footwork and counterpunching. When he hits a fighter a few times they become cautious when it comes to throwing their punches. Because of this factor I don’t think Donaire is going to have the opportunities to set the traps I believe are necessary to win the bout. It’s going to be a cautious affair that will be a close unanimous decision victory for Rigondeaux. If I was a betting man, I’d bet the odds on a draw. Thats how close this one is in my mind.

Kevin Perry


  • IrishmaninArabia

    Hope you guys write an article/prediction about Fury/Cunningham. I sincerely hope Fury gets KTFO because he doesn’t show respect, and USS Cunningham is a class act all the way

  • Prayers are in order for the marathoners who were injured in Boston.

  • Kurt, I am not sure there were any top Cubans near his weight in his career, as for Broner, Abril would give him problems but don’t see that fight happening. Broner beats him I think. Much bigger puncher with the skillset to match.

  • Ringtalk really dropped the ball. Over 24 hours later and no post fight article on the fight. The moderated comments makes it impossible for post fight discussion on this site. No reason to moderate anymore. Pac Nuts are out of business and with Donaire being exposed, the Filipino fight fan will be a rare sighting around here. Get it together.

  • Congratulations, Rigondeaux, for beating Donaire. You did it as expected, the ‘Cuban way.’ Not enough entertaining action, but who cares, you have the skill set of a good ol’ fashion boxing. Congratulation!

  • Flawless execution

  • Bro, u called it. Total school session BC of footwork, great defense, and offense tough enough for 2012s fighter of the year NOT to go for broke.

  • Mayweather and Broner exceptional boxers with superb defense as well, but they can both make it a fight when they need to. This Cuban if he doesn’t change a bit in future fights will not have much of a draw. He is too risk aversive. Maybe it was because of who he was fighting and the atmosphere and hype. But if that’s all he does he won’t be much of a draw.

  • The Cuban is an exceptional boxer no doubt, plenty of skills, great defense and counterpuncher with some pop. But he is going to be in a bunch of stinkers if he doesn’t do anymore than he did last night to make it a fight. He doesn’t take any risks whatsoever. Donaire is a good counter puncher as well but if he hadn’t tried to make it a fight last night we would not have had one.

  • Was not close. Hopefully Money Mike didn’t lose too much.

  • Glad I changed my mind but that was some stinker.

  • Donaire should win by the 9th Rd, with a TKO!!!

  • How come pretty Boy Floyd never had the balls to get in the ring with one of the top Cuban fighters??????? How come Andrian Broner wont fight a top Cuban fighter???? How come KP my friend?????

  • I changed my mind. Nonito leaves himself open at time and that will prove fatal to Rigo’s pin point counterpunching. His defens is also superior.

  • I’m going with The Flash based on intangibles one of which is he knows what it feels like to lose. One the other hand, his left hook is very tangible.

  • Hmmm. Rigo wins the Ugly contest.

  • I see Rigo winning this one. Just have a feeling. It is an amazing matchup though and I would not be surprised at all if Nonito pulled it out. I’m just betting on Rigo.

  • As cliched as it is to say, I think if Donaire just sticks to the game plan and throws combinations, the KO will come, but if he looks for the 1 punch KO like he has after good performances, it will be a long night for him.

  • IrishmaninArabia

    KP, I agree with you on this one. Rigo by unanimous decision. I don’t think Donaire can catch him. Freddie Roache’s comments in a Youtube video I saw indicated that Rigo was the only fighter that he could not hit while working the pads, that’s in his entire time as a trainer. I think that the footwork and movement edge to Rigo will be the biggest factor.

  • Donaire is gonna crush this bum early.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *