I was expecting a bloody chess match but the “Speed King” turned out to be a lowly pawn. WBO super bantamweight champ Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire and WBC Emeritus Champion Toshiaki Nishioka of Japan had the credentials for a potential classic. But Nishioka was too cautious and the crowd at the Home Depot Center in Carson, California and the fight fans watching on television on a Sunday morning here in the Philippines expressed their disgust in the first five rounds.
Donaire showed that he had the superior speed and landed his jab and one-two combinations with ease in the early rounds. The Japanese southpaw tried to open up in the 6th and paid for it by being decked by a left uppercut.
Nishioka did try to fight back in the seventh and eighth rounds but Donaire knocked him down again with a hard right in the ninth round. Nishioka got up but Referee Raul Caiz,Sr. stopped the carnage at the 1:54 mark in the 9th.
Nishioka drops to 39W-5L-3D, 24 KO's while Donaire moves up to 30W-1L with 19 KO's.
With this stoppage, the 29 year old Donaire also sent a message that he has knockout power at the super bantamweight level. He also earned the historically linear world title belt from Ring magazine and the Diamond belt from the WBC.
Donaire officially established himself as the best 122 lb boxer on the planet but if he continues to have fights like this one, he could wind up being the lower weight division equivalent of the Klitschko brothers. Not good for someone who wants to be a ‘pay per view’ attraction like Manny Pacquiao.
Donaire is targeting the winner of next month’s 122-pound showdown between WBC titleholder Abner Mares of the U.S. and Anselmo Moreno of Panama. But any one of these two fine champions will still be underdogs against the Flash.
RIOS-ALVARADO STEALS THE SHOW
The fight was as good as advertised, even better. Classics like Castillo-Corrales I and the Gatti-Ward Trilogy were mentioned during the build-up to Brandon Rios and Mike Alvarado and they certainly performed to expectations.
Rios (31W-0L-1D, 24 KO's) gave Alvarado (33W-1L, 23 KO's) his first career loss in the show stopping ring war that was later tagged as a “Fight of the Year” candidate. The see-saw battle was fought at close quarters right from the opening round and power punches were traded non-stop.
Both fighters never took a back step. In the 7th Rios landed devastating head shots that snapped back the head of Alvarado. After a few of those shots, Referee Pat Russell decided that Alvarado, who was only supported by the ring ropes, had enough and stopped the fight at 1:57 of the round.
Rios, who won the vacant WBO Latino light welterweight title, is now looking at facing the winner of the fourth bout between Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez.