Eric Morales, left, defends his World Boxing Council super lightweight title against Danny Garcia, at Reliant ArenaSaturday, March 24, 2012, in Houston. Photo: Cody Duty, Houston Chronicle / © 2011 Houston Chronicle via ww2.hdnux.com.
An undisputed legend of the sport, 35-year-old Erik Morales, and one of the finest fighters produced by one of the finest boxing nation's on the globe, Mexico, looked to continue his incredible career resurgence last night (March 24, 2012) at the expense of unbeaten Danny Garcia.
Sadly, the best stories aren't necessarily the ones that get happy endings.
While Morales did well for himself in the early going at The Reliant Center in Houston, Texas, using his experience and craftiness to outland Garcia, the power and speed of the young challenger began taking a toll on "El Terrible," who increasingly found himself with his back against the ropes.
A huge left hook in round 11 sent Morales to the canvas, and try as he might, the old soldier just didn't have the power to score the miraculous knockout he needed, and he dropped a close, but poorly-scored, unanimous decision.
We still love ya, Erik. Always will.
In the opening bout of the evening, hard-hitting James Kirkland looked to push the memory of his first-round annihilation by Nobuhiro Ishida even further out of the public recollection against the crafty Carlos Molina.
It was memorable, to say the least.
The majority of the bout comprised Molina using careful clinching and excellent head movement to pretty much run circles around Kirkland, outlanding him by a huge margin. Once the ninth round rolled around, however, Kirkland stopped trying to outbox the technically-superior Molina and instead used his strength to bully Molina around. At the end of the tenth round, he seemed to knock Molina down with a right.
That’s when things got stupid.
The knockdown came pretty much exactly at the bell. As Molina rose to his feet and the referee continued his count, one of his cornermen, oblivious to the knockdown, stepped into the ring and was shooed out by referee Jon Schorle. Once Schorle finished the mandatory eight-count, he called the fight, citing the cornerman’s entrance as grounds for disqualification.
Only in Texas ... I hope.
For full results and play-by-play of the night's proceedings on HBO click here.