Donaire favored to beat Rigondeaux
By Chris Williams: WBA World super bantamweight champion Guillermo Rigondeaux (11-0, 8 KO’s) will have to prove the betting experts wrong when he faces WBO super bantamweight champion Nonito Donaire (31-1, 20 KO’s) next month on April 13th. Donaire is already a heavy favorite to defeat the Cuban in their unification bout at the Radio City Music Hall in New York City.
Donaire, 5’7”, has the advantage in pro experience, and a huge, huge advantage in weight, height and reach over the 5’4” Rigondeaux. The height and reach is going to be the biggest problems for Rigondeaux, as he struggled in his two previous fights against tall 5’8” fighters Ricardo Cardoba and Robert Marroquin.
One site, oddschecker, has Donaire listed as a 10-1 favorite to beat Rigondeaux on 4/13, and that’s just hard to imagine odds as steep as that.
Donaire isn’t quite as tall as them, but he’s awfully close and that’s going to be the one area where Rigondeaux may have problems. In terms of skills, Rigondeaux is clearly better than Donaire. He can do a lot more in the ring, and he’s far superior defensively. Donaire only has a good left hook, and that’s pretty much it. His right hand is nothing special, and Rigondeaux has already fought guys with a better right hand that Donaire in the 23-year-old Marroquin.
Where Rigondeaux kind of blew it in his fight with Cardoba is by not letting his hands go enough. Rigondeaux lost rounds simply by not being active enough. He circled around the ring, throwing occasional jabs, and doing a great job of keeping the 5’8” Cardoba from getting his shots off, but the judges gave the rounds to Cardoba just off the fact that he was the one making the fight rather than the one landing shots. Rigondeaux has learned a lot from that fight, and he’s a much busier fighter now than he was back then.
When Rigondeaux was mixing it up with Cardoba, he was able to dominate despite giving away four inches in height, and a lot of weight. If Rigondeaux can do this to a huge fighter like Cardoba, who now fights in the featherweight division, then he’ll be able to do that with the 5’7” Donaire.