Quijano: Beware what you wish for-A A +A
Tuesday, October 29, 2013
MAYBE everybody had somewhere else to go last Saturday night, or maybe it was all the pent-up angst from the 3,000 or more tremors we have been experiencing—whatever the case, I didn’t mind as we had the fastest Pinoy Pride installment ever.
It was all over before 10 p.m. When, traditionally, a stacked card would wind up around 11 p.m.
Knockouts came fast and furious during the undercards. For the main event, I had scarcely warmed up to my first bottle at my usual spot (at the bar, where else) when Genesis Servania delivered the coup de grace—a sneaky uppercut that Rafael Concepcion never saw coming.
Concepcion came, foresaw a knockout, and got his wish granted.
THE FIGHT. I had almost forgotten how awkward a fighter Concepcion was until he made several ungainly lunges in the first minute of the fight that left him open.
Back in 2008, AJ Banal made him pay for those gawky mistakes and pounded him silly during the first six rounds. But “Bazooka’ was later on outlasted in that fight, despite clearly being the superior boxer.
Servania also took advantage of those openings and the first round was full of fistic fireworks. Concepcion also landed a couple of clubbing, thudding blows but Servania owned the exchanges. When the bell rang, everybody cheered the action.
In the second, Servania picked up where he left and teed off on the advancing Concepcion.
With just about a minute gone, Concepcion lunged in when Servania counter-tagged him with an uppercut from hell the former never saw coming.
It landed right on the button, and thrown with enough torque to send Concepcion into dreamland.
“El Torito” lay unconscious for a few minutes before he recovered. After he was taken to the dressing room, I saw a stretcher being hoisted but thankfully, it was taken away a few minutes later.
THOUGHTS. It was a triumphant night for ALA Boxing, as the stable exacted sweet revenge over an opponent who waylaid their flagship fighter a couple of years ago.
Curiously though, despite getting back in line and fighting for a world title again, we all know that Banal faltered and lost in almost the same manner against Thai Pongloang Sor Singyu last year.
Did Concepcion actually do them a favor by exposing Banal’s infirmities earl on? Or did that brutal loss actually inflict more damage than what was apparent to the eye, so much so that Banal has never fully recovered from the damage done to his fighter’s psyche?
Whatever the case, getting some measure of payback on Concepcion who came bearing gifts (a pillow for Servania to sleep on supposedly) is one of those seminal moments that a boxing stable needs.
There were rumors that Concepcion hasn’t been the same fighter he was after he became a world champion, but the latter has insisted he became an even better fighter.
But let’s not take anything away from Servania’s victory. This likeable young man, worked his butt off training for this fight.
The ease by which his victory was produced should not detract from the fact that up until that moment, Concepcion was an enigma: a dangerous former world champion capable of doing the unexpected.
Congratulations to “Azukal.” A few more fights against seasoned world-beaters and in a year or two, he should be ready to compete for a world title.
THE ANOMALOUS HOPKINS. The “Alien” did it again. Eager to demonstrate his preternatural aura of invincibility was not from this world, Bernard Hopkins continued to negotiate successfully with Father Time and Mother Nature, by defeating Karo Murat and retain his IBF light heavyweight crown.
Hopkins got tagged more than in any of his recent fights, but the ageless marvel justified it by saying he took more risks because he was looking for the knockout win.
Hopkins vs. Floyd Mayweather Jr. next? If you believe in extra-terrestrial life, then you better believe it.
LAST ROUND. It’s on Aloha Navarro who recently celebrated her birthday. Cheers, gaw!
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 30, 2013.