Mexico, land of braves in the ring 

by
Mexico, land of braves in the ring 
Mexico, land of braves in the ring

Mexico, land of braves in the ring 

by
Mexico, land of braves in the ring 
Mexico, land of braves in the ring

When people talk about boxing with friends who are fans of the sport, they almost always allude to Mexico as a land of fighters of renowned courage in the ring and agree that it is the Latin American country that has produced the largest number of world champions in the region, some 170, only surpassed by the United States, which has had more than 460 (the numbers change constantly), and inevitably, the topic drifts towards who have been the most brilliant boxing stars of Mexico over time.

When this happens, the first name on the table is Julio César Chávez, ” The Caesar of Boxing”, as he is called in his homeland, who is unquestionably cited as the best Aztec boxer of all time for his three world titles (super featherweight, lightweight and super lightweight), in addition to his 107 wins, 85 by KO, two draws, only 6 setbacks with 4 knockouts and an extensive string of 90 straight victories between his debut and first loss in a career that spanned from 1980 to 2005.

It is worth mentioning that it is very difficult to reach a consensus on who would be Chavez’s successor, due to the great number of Mexican boxing figures.  

Having said the above, we will now bring you approximately twenty names, in no specific order, with the warning that perhaps some stars may be unjustly omitted. We want the reader-fan to be the one to make the pertinent classification, according to his or her opinion.

AN EXCLUSIVE ROSTER

After Sinaloa puncher JC Chavez, the next name that comes to mind is:  

– Bantamweight Ruben “El Púas” Olivares (89-13-3, 79 KOS), pride of the popular Tepito neighborhood in the capital; whose disorderly life prevented him from filling better and glorious pages, because such behavior outside the ring took him away from the environment prematurely.

– Ricardo: “Finito” Lopez, born in Mexico City 57 years ago, never defeated in 52 fights with only a draw with Rosendo Alvarez, 38 knockouts in 16 years of activity. He was WBA, WBC and WBO champion at minimum weight and then was crowned in the IBF in the minimumweight. Between 1990-01 he made 22 defenses of his belts, and The Ring included him among the 10 bests of the 90s. 

– Raúl “Raton” Macias, a charismatic bantamweight from the “Barrio Bravo” of Tepito, former world champion, friend of movie and show business stars such as Pedro Infante, Jorge Negrete, María Félix and Cantinflas, among others; 

– Carlos “El Cañas” Zarate, a fearsome bantamweight puncher, 66 wins, 63 by KO and only three losses. 

– The tapatio Marco Antonio Barrera, a bantamweight nicknamed ” The Baby Face Assassin”, who defeated the mythical Filipino Manny Pacquiao and knocked out 44 with 23 favorable decisions, 7 defeats, only one by KO; 

– Erik “El Terrible” Morales, who had an epic rivalry with Barrera (they fought 3 times between 2000 and 2006, with 2-1 in his favor), leaving a record of 52 wins, 36 knockouts and only 9 losses; 

– The Yucatecan Miguel “El Pequeño Maestro” Canto, flyweight king in the 70’s, winner in 61 of 70 fights with 9 losses and 15 wins before the limit; 

– Luis Villanueva Paramo, better known as Kid Azteca and Kid Chino, one among only 5 in history -Archie Moore, George Foreman, Bernard Hopkins and the Panamanian Roberto “Mano e Piedra” Durán-, who fought in 4 different decades, since he fought for 32 years between 1929-1961. He was national welterweight champion, winner by KO in 114 occasions, a record for the country, 192 wins in total, 47 setbacks, 11 draws, 9 losses by KO: He was never taken into consideration for a world championship fight, even when he was a challenger, apparently because he was feared. In fact, he defeated the famous former world champions Fritzie Zivic and Ceferino Garcia, who eluded him when they were champions; 

– Juan Manuel “Dinamita” Marquez, 56-7-1-40 KO’s, who faced Pacquiao 4 times, with 2 very close and questionable defeats, a draw, and a dramatic 6-round knockout the last time they met; 

– Bantamweight Rodolfo Martinez (47-7-1-35 KO, 4 KO, 4 against); 

– Jose “El Toluco” Lopez, idolized by the fans, 99-21-2, 63 KO, 8 against; 

– Jose Medel, “El Huitlacoche”, hated after knocking out “El Toluco”, 69-31-8, 44 KO’s, 10 Kos received; 

– Los Gallos Romeo “El Lacandón” Anaya (50-21-1, 42 KO,15 against; 

– Rafael Herrera,47-9-4 with,20-3 in knockouts; 

– Alfonso Zamora, 33-5-0, 32 and 5 in KO’s given and received; Chucho Castillo, 47-17-2, 23 KO’s, 6 against; Octavio “Famoso” Gomez, 61-18-7, 36 KO’s, 11 against; 

– Juan Zurita, from Veracruz, who was world lightweight champion in 1944 with a decision over Sammy Angot and in the ring between 1932-49, with 131 wins, 48 before the limit, 23 losses, 9 by KO; 

– The still active Jalisco’s Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, 59-2-2, 39 KO, current undisputed WBA-WBC-WBO-IBF-WBO super middleweight sovereign, thrones that will be at stake next September 30 against the Texan Jermell Charlo, 35-1-1, 19 KOS also undisputed super welterweight champion at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.

There is still much to talk about on this subject, which we will do on a future occasion, when we will talk about other figures of Mexico’s past, such as Alberto “Baby” Arizmendi, the first Mexican world champion, crowned in 1932; Ricardo “Pajarito” Moreno, a hope that did not come true and, finally, Rodolfo “El Chango” Casanova, 2 times winner of Zurita, native of Leon, Guanajuato and the greatest idol of his time, years 30-40 and certainly among the best fighters of his land, despite not having girded any world belt, and of whom we already have an extensive biographical work stored in the fridge.

As a colophon, let’s say that the already traditional relevant position of Mexican boxing in the world concert remains unscathed. Proof of this is that currently 8 Aztec fighters hold world belts in different categories and organizations.

At present, Canelo is accompanied by 7 of his fellow countrymen, for 8 of the 17 recognized divisions. They are: Emanuel “Vaquero” Navarrete, WBO super featherweight champion, title he shares with Dominican Héctor Luis García WBA; the Welsh Joe Cordina (IBF) and American O’Saquie Foster (IBF); featherweight Luis Alberto López (IBF), with his compatriot Ray Vargas (WBC); Brandon Figueroa (USA), regular WBC champion; the Cuban Robelsy Ramírez WBO regular champion; and English Leigh Wood, WBA; bantamweight Alejandro Santiago (WBC) with Japanese Takuma Inoue (WBA); Australian Jason Moloney (WBO) and Puerto Rican Emmanuel Rodriguez (IBF); WBC super flyweight Juan Francisco “Gallo Estrada with Fernando Martinez (IBF), Japan’s Junto Nakatani (IBF) and Kazuto Ioka (WBA), and finally Daniel Valladares, owner of the IBF minimum title with Tamamanoon Nyomtrong (Thailand), Eric Rosa (DR), Tagalog Panya Pradabsri (WBC) and Yudai Shigeoka (Japan), regular IBF title holder.    

Having said that, you may now compile your personal ranking to the best of your knowledge and belief.


Lamela will be back to fight Castagno 

Lamela will be back to fight Castagno 



“Mantequilla” in the memory

“Mantequilla” in the memory

There is no particular reason for this second publication of...

Riyadh Season: Isaac Cruz ready for WBA defence

Riyadh Season: Isaac Cruz ready for WBA defence

World Boxing Association (WBA) super lightweight champion Isaac Cruz has...

Miranda vs Albons this Saturday in Madrid 

Miranda vs Albons this Saturday in Madrid 

Gold featherweight champion Jennifer Miranda will face Victoria Albons this...