Ricky Hatton defeats Juan Lazcano

Discussion in 'Boxing' started by speeds, May 25, 2008.

  1. speeds

    speeds $2.50 highball, $1.50 beer Staff Member Administrator GFX Team

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    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/main.jhtm...5/uohatt125.xml

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    <div class='quotetop'>QUOTE </div><div class='quotemain'>Ricky Hatton "got rid of the demons" with a one-sided points landslide against US-based Mexican Juan Lazcano, but came perilously close to being knocked out twice in his first contest since losing to Floyd Mayweather last December.

    There were those yesterday who believe Hatton's scant regard for his own physical safety when he attacks should be a sign for him to retire. Hatton indeed retained his IBO light welterweight title in front of a home crowd of 57,000 fans at the City of Manchester Stadium, but it has left as many questions as answers.

    The imponderables over Hatton's future – and certainly a rematch with Mayweather – have grown since the twelve rounds on Saturday night. Hatton won easily on all three judges scorecards: 120-110, 118-110, 120-108. Hatton in now 44-1.

    "It was a difficult fight," Hatton said. "I've never been more nervous in boxing match in my life, all those demons were in my mind about not coming back so strong." Hatton survived a first scare in the eighth round when he walked into a wild left hook from Lazcano. A left to the body then left the Mancunian temporarily stunned.

    Hatton clung desperately onto the challenger while his head cleared then stormed back, battering Lazcano across the ring with three right hooks before the bell ended a frantic round. Hatton was rocked again by a big left in round 10, but gained respite as referee Howard Foster stopped the fights as Hatton's boot laces had come undone.

    It clearly allowed Hatton to regain his composure. But his army chanted, sang and went silent with concern. One thing is certain, and will remain so: Hatton is a phenomenon, and has a following like no other.

    The atmosphere was one to savour. Hatton said post-contest: "The hardest [fight] is now out of the way. Anyone who has been knocked out can tell you – it is a very over-rated experience. I was very nervous beforehand. You can't prepare yourself for how you are going to feel in the ring on the night. I felt confident, but nervous. I put pressure on myself.

    "It was a very good fight for me; I think I hurt Juan nearly enough every round, put my foot on the gas, and it landed me in trouble. Even though I was a long way ahead on the cards, I always go for the knockout, and it gets me in trouble sometimes. I was nervous about losing. I needed to get rid of the demons. He did hurt me a couple of times, and disorientated me, but I weathered the storm."

    For Lazcano, this was the 33-year-old Mexican's first bout since losing a 12-round decision to Vivian Harris in February 2007 in a WBC light welterweight title eliminator. It was also confirmed that a deal had been agreed for Hatton to face Paulie Malignaggi, who won on the undercard. The bout will be in November, with New York a likely location.

    Malignaggi may have broken a knuckle in his right hand, in an unconvincing display defending his IBF light-welterweight title against Lovemore N'Dou – which included a haircut from his corner between rounds 8 and 9 as his braided extensions fell out across his face – but he believes he has the armoury to defeat Hatton.

    "I don't think Ricky Hatton looked at his best. Nor did I. Some guys have come back from a loss in a low key way though, and look what this guy has done, and in front of so many fans. The way he looked, at my best I would have beaten him. When me and Ricky meet we will see who is the best at 140lbs in the world. He gets hit, and he was inconsistent against Lazcano. I've always seen things in Ricky Hatton I can exploit."

    Lazcano disagreed. "Do you have a funny bone, Ricky ?" Lazcano asked Hatton in the post-fight news conference. "Because if you do, Malignaggi will tickle you to death when he hits you in the ring."

    It was a point well-made. Hatton's ring entrance was both self-effacing and amusing. "He's never seen a salad, he's eaten all the pies; Hey Ho, Ricky Fatton," rang out the lyrics as Hatton emerged in a blow up suit under his robe, looking more mini-Sumo wrestler than slimline 10st fighter.

    But the fight itself was his focus, and there were tell-tale signs that Hatton must not lose his head in the ring. The three-time world champion in two weight divisions, returned to his bullocking ways against an obdurate opponent in Lazcano, who came within a whisker of felling the local hero.

    There were worrying signs in those defining moments for Hatton, and within his camp doubts must have re-surfaced over the sense in stepping in against Floyd Mayweather again. Retirement is a slim possibility, and with a three-fight deal on the table with Home Box Office in the US, Hatton's phenomenal ring career will most likely end across the pond.

    Billy Graham, Hatton's trainer for the last 15 years, admitted as much. "I was worried. But I always worry. In round 8 or round 10, he rocked Ricky down to his boots. As soon as he hurt Juan, he just tried to finish it. I told Ricky he was well ahead towards the end of the fight, and to jab and move, but he never seems to make it easy for himself. But that's why the fans love him. But I think he should not gamble as much."

    Lazcano added: "I take my hat off to Ricky Hatton. He talks the talk, and walks the walk. He's a true champion because he's willing to lay it all on the line."

    Ticket sales – at 57,000 - topped the £6million mark, while another 20,000 fans could not get seats. No wonder Hatton called his supporters "the best pound for pound fans in the world."

    Oscar De La Hoya, boxer and head of Golden Boy Promotions, likened Hatton's adoring followers to those who followed Mexican hero Julio Cesar Chavez.

    "He has the same appeal," De La Hoya told The Daily Telegraph. "Ricky Hatton showed what kind of fighter he is in front of 57,000 fans. He showed he will be a champion for years to come. Styles makes fights and I think Ricky Hatton against Paulie Malignaggi is a superfight. Madison Square Garden is the mecca and we will look at the options, but a meeting of these two there could be a very special event."</div>
     
  2. man_u_barmy_army

    man_u_barmy_army DYC Legend +Young Prodigy

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    well the result was obvious before it had started hatton will survive
     
  3. Laker_fan

    Laker_fan JBB JustBBall Member

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    Theres no point in him coming back unless he fights talent around the same quality as Mayweather. If he continues to fight people like Lazcano, its going to do nothing for his legacy.
     
  4. man_u_barmy_army

    man_u_barmy_army DYC Legend +Young Prodigy

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    yes i know it is just training isn't he versing mayweather later though?
     

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