Hatton vs. Lazcano: Ricky Looking To Rebuild His Confidence

By Boxing News - 03/12/2008 - Comments

By Dan Ambrose: Former super lightweight champion Ricky Hatton (43-1, 31 KOs) has finally decided on his next opponent Juan Lazcano (37-4-1, 27 KOs), whom he will be fighting on May 24th in Manchester, England. Hatton, 29, is coming off of a 10th round TKO loss to Floyd Mayweather Jr. in December 2007, and because of that it was expected that Hatton would choose a beatable opponent, one that he could look good against without the possibility of being beaten. That didn’t prevent his many fans from wanting him to fight fighters, preferably the good kind that are ranked in the top 10. Unfortunately, Lazcano doesn’t fit the bill, although he is ranked #12 in the IBF, which makes him at least a decent fighter.

His style of fighting is almost exactly the same as Hatton, in that he tends to brawl regardless of the circumstances. He has a high percentage of knockout, but most of them have come against B-level fighters rather than top flight opposition. Unlike Mayweather, Hatton will have no problems attempting to make contact with Lazcano, because he’ll be standing directly in front of him throwing bombs for the duration of the fight. That can be a good thing or a bad thing depending upon what kind of shape Hatton comes for the fight.

If recent photos or any judge, Hatton has quite a bit of weight to take off before their May 24th fight, for he looks to be weighing in at between 190 lbs and 200, with all of it being newly placed fat on his body since December. Though that’s Hatton’s style to put on weight in between fights and then take it off quickly, that’s not without it’s risks in regards to having an overall effect on his endurance. Perhaps this is why Hatton looked faded in his bout with Luis Collazo in 2007, and similarly exhausted against Mayweather.

Whether or not Lazcano, 33, can last long enough for Hatton’s conditioning to become a problem is the question. Hatton, naturally, will be out to try and end the fight as fast as he can, and with 50,000 Manchester fans screaming their heads off for him, it will be hard for Lazcano. Add in the fact that Hatton will likely be able to get away with his rough inside fighting techniques – such as rabbit punches, elbows, hitting & holding and low blows – and it would suggest that Lazcano will be in for a tough time against Hatton. This is perhaps Lazcano’s best opponent ever, having fought Vivian Harris, Jose Luis Castillo and and Golden Johnson, all of whom beat him. Hatton will likely too unless something unforeseen occurs, like Hatton suddenly running out of gas. I highly doubt it though.