Ever since Guillermo Rigondeaux took Nonito Donaire’s soul on April 13, 2013, he has no longer been the same fighter. His first fight back after getting outclassed and losing his title to Rigondeaux, he fought a washed up Vic Darchinyan who was supposed to be a walk in the park since he knocked him out years ago. Nonito looked horrible, he was losing badly to a man he already beat, if he didn’t stop Darchinyan again he was going to lose on the scorecards. He got lucky and was able to land a punch to get a TKO stoppage in the 9th round in a very one sided fight that he nearly lost.
Personally, I was never impressed with Nonito even before he lost to Rigondeaux, or how I like to put it got “Exposed,” he mainly fought smaller fighters and was built up in a similar fashion to his fellow Filipino Manny Pacquiao with hand picked opponents.
HBO and Top Rank really invested a lot into Nonito because they were looking for someone to fill the shoes of Pacquiao and possibly latch onto that fan base, but it backfired when the smaller Cuban master named Guillermo Rigondeaux aka “El Chacal” put a boxing lesson on the media darling.
Since that day, Guillermo’s promoter Bob Arum who also promotes Nonito and HBO, treated him like a red headed step child and put him in purgatory. Maybe they were mad that he shut down their future cash cow? The reasoning for their actions of ignoring Guillermo are insulting and unprofessional, saying things like he has no fan base, or he is so boring that he won’t sell.
This is a problem with boxing, the fans today do not respect the sweet science of hit and not get hit. If Rigondeaux was boxing in the 80s or 70s he would be a star, he would be well respected for his superior defensive skill and high ring intellect. The casual fans just want to see a slug fest or wild brawl and hope someone gets knocked out cold.
South African WBA/IBO featherweight champion Simpiwe Vetyeka is another fighter who is being cherry picked by Nonito’s team to help him win a belt at featherweight. I believe this could possibly be another cherry pick gone wrong. It’s not going to be an easy fight for the Filipino, because this South African can punch and he is tough, he beat the long reigning previously undefeated Indonesian featherweight champion Chris John by knock out and took his belt in impressive style.
I can see Nonito tiring out in the later rounds after eating a lot of jabs and eventually quit on his stool against Vetyeka. Remember before he stopped Darchinyan in the rematch he had the look of a defeated fighter who was ready to throw in the towel, he will have that same defeated look he had against Rigondeaux and Darchinyan when he fights Vetyeka.
When Vetyeka fought Chris John in Indonesia he knew he wasn’t going to get the decision if the fight went the full 12 rounds, so he came in there with the intention of stopping or putting a beating on the hometown guy and he won. He will have that same mentality in Macau and this is why I believe he will give Donaire a tough fight.
Simpiwe Vetyeka either wins by stoppage forcing Nonito Donaire to quit on his stool or he gets robbed and loses on the scorecards.
It’s a shame that on Saturday night, Nonito Donaire will headline a card in Macau, China and be featured on HBO, but the man who whooped him can’t even get a fight.