Convicted Artist Magazine

Apr 16th
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martinez-vs-donaireAs Pacquiao and Mayweather deal with avoiding each other in different ways, our attention has turned to two far more exciting/explosive/fearless fighters of late.  Pacquiao is on his seniors/already exposed tour, and probably wishing he’d signed with Golden Boy.  There he’d have skipped straight to Mosley while we still gave a damn, and then right into Mayweather.  Two fights, huge money, done!

Now, Pacquiao is on this “filling stadiums to watch him carry no hopers” plan that Arum has scheduled.  Mayweather is avoiding fighting altogether, except with his baby’s mama.  Mainstream fans may still be caught up in the question of who is better, who will win… but for the hardcores… we have two new exciting, active, explosive pound-for-pound fighters.  They have left us asking 'Manny and Floyd who'?

Unlike Pacquiao and Mayweather, Nonito Donaire and Sergio Martinez fight the best their divisions (and even other divisions) have to offer.  Unlike Pacquiao and Mayweather, they cannot possibly face each other, so when it comes to who is the best between the two of them, the question is left to the experts.

The case for Martinez: When it comes to consitent quality of opposition, Martinez has a clear edge.  Donaire has two explosive wins over top quality fighters: Darchinyan and Montiel, but in the 4 years between them, he had trouble securing meaningful fights.  Martinez took on dangerous Kermit Cintron, Paul Williams twice, Pavlik, and Dzindziruk.  That is more championship level fights than most at 154 and 160 will have in their entire career.  I am only talking about Maravilla’s last two years!  He has only one loss in that span, and it was a close one, brutally avenged.  His recent destructions over previously rock-chinned Williams and Dzindziruk prove he has even added power to his arsenal, and shows no sign of slowing down.

The case for Donaire: While Martinez has been facing top fighters, he has not exactly been dominant.  While he held close to even with Paul Williams in their first fight, and deserved the nod against Cintron, they were competitive fights.  Pavlik may even have beaten Martinez had Kelly's eye not been cut badly in round 9.  Martinez was also being hustled out of the ring at the time he landed the big bomb against Williams in their second match.  Dzindziruk probably won rounds 5 and 6, so even in his most dominant performance, he still showed some vulnerability.  Donaire, however, has scarcely lost a round since his close decision over Kahren Haryutunyan in 2006.  Darchinyan won round 1 in July of 2007.  That’s about it.  Other than Vitali Klitschko, I cannot think of a champion who has been that dominant in that many fights in a row, recently.  The recent, brutal, one-sided knockouts over former world champions Sidorenko and Montiel have also proven that Donaire is like quick sand… the harder you struggle, the quicker you sink.

When all is said and done, Martinez may be in a more glamourous division, where bigger names are available to him, but the dominance of Donaire cannot be denied.  He is number 3, while Martinez is number 4.  However, if Mayweather and Pacquiao do not complete their destiny by the end of this year, Donaire and Martinez may be numbers 1 and 2.

Chris Strait

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