Roman Gonzalez vs. Pedro Guevara on May 5 on Golovkin-Martirosyan card
By Dan Ambrose: Former four division world champion and pound-for-pound king Roman ‘Chocolatito’ Gonzalez (46-2, 38 KOs) will be fighting former WBC light flyweight champion Pedro Guevara (30-3-1, 17 KOs) in a 10 round fight on May 5 on HBO on the undercard of Gennady Golovkin vs. Vanes Martirosyan at the StubHub Center in Carson, California.
The card starts at 11:00 p.m. ET/8:00 a.m. PT on HBO Boxing. Gonzalez-Guevara will be the co-feature bout on the card. Also, on the card is unbeaten IBF/IBO/WBA/WBC/WBO female welterweight champion Cecilia Braekhus (32-0, 9 KOs) defending against Kali Reis (13-6-1, 4 KOs) in a 10 round fight.
Gonzalez vs. Guevara is not a great fight, but it’s a confidence booster type of match-up for Chocolatito. After three grueling fights in a row, Chocolatito needs a relatively easy fight against a smaller guy to get a win under his belt. Back in 2016, Gonzalez would have likely destroyed someone like Guevara without any problems. Things have changed for Gonzalez since he moved up to 115 and taken on bigger and stronger fighters than himself.
Gonzalez, 30, is trying to stop a 2-fight losing streak that has upended his once brilliant career. Gonzalez has lost his last two fights to the hard hitting Srisaket Sor Rungvisai, and he’s badly in need of a need. Even before Chocolatito’s loss to Rungvisai, he barely beat Carlos Cuadras by a hard fought 12 round unanimous decision in September 2016. The last dominant performance for Gonzalez came in April 2016 when he beat McWilliams Arroyo by a 12 round unanimous decision.
Gonzalez-Guevara will be a good test to see whether Chocolatito has anything left at this point after three off performances in a row against Rungvisai and Cuadras. It’s really hard to tell whether Gonzalez has lost something from his game though, because his problems started immediately upon on him moving up to the super flyweight division in September 2016 against Cuadras.
Before moving up in weight to 115, Gonzalez was totally dominant at 112 and 108. Things changed only after he moved up to 115 in the super flyweight division. It’s been a disaster for Gonzalez since he moved up to this weight class, and he seems unwilling to move back down to 112 despite the fact that it’s clear that he needs to make that move.
Gonzalez’s only hope for staying at 115 is to target WBA belt holder Kal Yafai, IBF champion Jerwin Ancajas or go after the vacant WBO belt against Donnie Nietes. Those are all very hard fights for Gonzalez, and I’m not sure he can beat those guys. Ancajas is a huge puncher, and he could have the same problems against him that he experienced in his two losses to Rungvisai.
Yafai doesn’t have a lot of power, but he’s big for the division. Gonzalez might be too small for Yafai. Nietes isn’t huge for the super flyweight division, but he does have a good punching power and he’s very experienced.
If Gonzalez loses to Guevara, then he’s going to need to think seriously about retiring from the sport unless he wants to move back down to 112 or 108. If Gonzalez can’t beat a light flyweight like Guevara, then there is no point in him continuing on.
Guevara lost his last fight to Ken Shiro by a 12 round majority decision late last year in October. Guevara has also suffered losses to Yu Kimura and John Riel Casimero.