Ring Ratings Update: Segura and Calderon switch places
The final week of August did not feature many bouts with RING-rated fighters, but the most significant fight of the weekend matched a RING champ against a No. 1 contender.
The matchup, which turned out to be one of the best fights of the year, resulted in the RING title changing hands and the world's two best junior flyweights switching places in the magazine's 108-pound ratings.
Ivan Calderon’s near 10-year unbeaten streak came to an end when he was stopped in the eighth round by Giovani Segura on Saturday in Calderon's hometown of Guaynabo, Puerto Rico.
Calderon (34-1-1, 6 knockouts), a two-division beltholder who had won 20 alphabet title bouts going into his showdown with Segura, was making the seventh defense of THE RING junior flyweight title he won from Hugo Cazares three years ago.
Segura (25-1-1, 21 KOs), THE RING’s No. 1-rated junior flyweight going into Saturday’s bout, held a 108-pound belt that he had successfully defended three times, but the Southern California-based Mexican slugger would not consider himself a “champion” until he beat Calderon.
“Giovani is a hardcore fan,” Segura’s manager, Richard Mota, explained to RingTV.com on Monday. “He wanted THE RING belt. That was important to him. [THE RING Managing Editor] Joe Santoliquito called me today and asked about Giovani’s waist size so his belt can be made. When I told Giovani that THE RING belt is on its way, he flipped out, he was so happy. He can’t wait to have it in his hands.”
THE RING’s Editorial Board welcomed a worthy addition to the magazine’s championship roster and also acknowledged Calderon’s brave stand against the younger, bigger and stronger Segura, as well as the boxing master’s considerable past accomplishments by installing the Puerto Rican veteran as the No. 1 junior flyweight contender.
“THE RING congratulates Giovani Segura on his hard-earned victory to take the title away from long-reigning Ivan Calderon,” said Nigel Collins, Editor-in-Chief of THE RING magazine. “Segura beat a potential Hall of Famer on his home turf to win the championship, which always adds luster to a new champ’s resume. Segura’s hard-hitting, swing-for-the-fences style is sure to bring excitement to the 108-pound division.
“Some members of THE RING’s Rating Advisory Panel thought that Calderon should have dropped lower than the No. 1 position because he took the 10 count on one knee, fully conscious and looking directly at the referee. But after due consideration of his past record at 108 pounds compared to that of other contenders and how hard he fought until the eighth round, THE RING decided to install Calderon as the top contender, at least for the time being.”
The Editorial Board’s decision was a good one. Calderon didn’t quit or give up. He was simply overwhelmed by the better man that night. The slick southpaw says the numerous liver shots he absorbed from Segura during the intense back-and-forth fight took his 35-year-old legs by the eighth round.
You won’t hear Segura question Calderon’s heart. The new champ said he still considers Calderon to be “the man” at 108 pounds after Saturday’s fight. There’s already talk of a rematch in Puerto Rico in 2011, which suits Segura and his team fine.
“We love Puerto Rico and the Puerto Rican fans,” said Mota. “The fans and the media supported their champ, but they showed us nothing but respect, even after the fight. We were treated like family by the great Felix Trinidad and Juan Manuel Lopez, so we’d love to travel back to the island and give Calderon a rematch.
“They love boxing on that island, and everybody is really knowledgeable about the sport, so it’s naturally a place where Giovani feels at home. Puerto Rico is to boxing what Brazil is to soccer.”
RING RATINGS UPDATE
Cesar Seda replaces Malik Bouiane at No. 10, following Seda’s victory over Jose Lopez. The move was based on Seda’s superior opposition.