The last time HBO viewers saw Marcos Rene Maidana it was as a second thought against superstar hopeful in Victor Ortiz. By the end of that fight, some boxing fans were left asking, "When will we see that Maidana guy again?" The answer came in the form of a six-round slugfest Saturday on Boxing After Dark, when the Argentinean Maidana faced relatively untested yet undefeated Victor Cayo and increased his record to 28-1, 27 KOs.
Cayo's style presented problems from the outset -- while his long arms allowed punches to slip through Maidana's defense and loose head movement kept him fighting close, Maidana was the toughest opponent he's faced in his career and withstood that pressure with ease. While Cayo was elusive at times, his defense needed improvement and his low hands left him susceptible to Maidana's vicious power.
For his part, Maidana showed the straight-ahead, sledgehammer style people saw against Victor Ortiz. After a water-testing first round feeling Cayo out, Maidana scored a knockdown just at the bell in round two which referee Joe Cortez counted as fair. The rest of the fight progressed with Maidana waiting out Cayo's punches and responding with sharp counters, landing the harder, more effective blows. Cayo was able to hold his own and showed significant heart.
"He was very tough, he had movement... my corner told me to slow down," said Maidana, of his opponent, but in the end it was a quick series of body blows, ten total in round six, that finally sped Maidana to victory, with a staggering ultimate body blow that put Cayo to the mat for good.
What's next for Maidana seems up in the air. The junior welterweight division is stacked with talent with a summer schedule loaded with match-ups. When asked who he wants next, Maidana told Max Kellermen "whoever at 140 comes out..."
In the opening bout, what started with a mood-dampening weigh-in on Friday when Joan Guzman came in almost ten pounds too heavy, eliminating his chance to take home a belt in a division lacking in obvious talent.
Given their first fight ended in a draw which many called a gift and he failed to make weight the second time around, one could have thought that the decks were stacked against Joan Guzman. However, after 12 rounds of cat-and-mouse, Ali Funeka was unable to show enough volume or match the controlling, showboating and hard-hitting effectiveness to drive the judges toward a decision victory. Add a few hard to score rounds and a sixth round knockdown by Guzman and Funeka was left with only the vacant belt and another loss on his record.
"He was very tough, he had movement... my corner told me to slow down," said Maidana
Posted 12:00 AM | Mar 27, 2010
HBO BAD - Mar. 27, 2010
Guzman vs. Funeka