Abril deserves a rematch against Rios after losing split decision

By Boxing News - 04/14/2012 - Comments

Image: Abril deserves a rematch against Rios after losing split decisionBy Allan Fox: Brandon Rios (30-0-1, 22 KO’s) should consider himself a very lucky fighter tonight after winning a very controversial 12 round split decision over Richard Abril (17-3-1, 8 KO’s) in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Abril moved around the ring hitting a stiff looking Rios at will with jabs and shots. When Rios could attempt to land his own shots, Abril would often smother him on the inside and keep him from getting his shots off.

In a way it was a fight somewhat similar to the Carlos Molina vs. James Kirkland fight not long ago, where Molina did a great job of smothering Kirkland’s punches all night long. However, in tonight’s fight, Rios was dominated the entire fight and Abril didn’t get hurt or run out of gas.

The judges scored it 116-112 and 115-113 for Rios, and 117-111 for Abril. I agreed with the judge that scored it for Abril, although I had Abril winning by a wider score than that based on his better work in almost every round of the fight.

The question is whether Rios will listen to the boxing public and give Abril a rematch to clear up the questionable results. Rios might have a problem arguing his case with his promoter Bob Arum, who already has a fight planned for Rios on July 14th at the Cowboys stadium in Arlington, Texas.

As good as Abril was in this fight, it’s doubtful that Rios will fight him again, because he’s likely to be pushed forward by Arum to the July 14th fight date against possibly Juan Manuel Marquez. Rios is already downgrading Abril because of the clinching he did in the fight, saying he should have lost points for that. I don’t see what he was talking about. Abril was clinching but it wasn’t extreme clinching like you saw in Devon Alexander’s recent win over Marcos Maidana where he clinched 10+ times per round. It was a reasonable amount of clinching and not to the extreme.

Rios won’t fight Abril again and I think it’s perhaps a good thing that he doesn’t. Abril wants the fight but Rios has been exposed already. He’ll do even worse in the rematch because Abril now knows how to fight the guy, and his superior skills will make the rematch a simple one.

Arum is probably going to keep Rios far away from fighters with boxing skills and just look to put him in fights where he can do well. The Marquez fight is obviously one where they feel he won’t do well, but it’s still a win-win situation because of the money that Rios will bring in for the fight. And also, there’s no shame in losing to a fighter like Marquez. It’s losing to guys like Abril that brings the shame and Rios should feel bad because he definitely lost that fight.

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