Eddie Hearn has made it clear that Edward Vazquez (15-2, 3 KOs) won’t be getting a rematch with IBF super featherweight champion Joe Cordina (17-0, 9 KOs) after losing a twelve round majority decision last Saturday night in Monte Carlo, Monaco.
Cordina was given the win by the scores 116-112, 116-112 and 114-114.
Jake Tiernan had Vazquez winning 7-5, as dominated the entire second half of the fight against a very old-looking Cordina, and he won the third round after buzzing him with a left hook that had his head spinning on a swivel.
Hearn says Cordina is at the stage of his career that he only wants the biggest fights against these fighters:
1. O’Shaquie Foster
2. Leigh Wood
3. Emanuel Navarrete
It’s fair to say that Hearn’s hopes of Cordina getting a fight against the superstar Navarrete is a deluded pipe dream. You can’t blame Hearn for wishing for that fight to happen, but it’s not realistic.
Cordina’s best chance for a big fight would be against WBC 130-lb champion Foster (21-2, 12 KOs), and that’s NOT a huge match-up, at least for U.S. boxing fans.
Foster isn’t a popular fighter in the United States. Maybe for British fans, this is a tremendous match-up, but not for Americans. O’Shaquie almost lost his last fight against Rocky Hernandez, needing to rally in the twelfth round to score a knockout. That guy isn’t even close to being as good as Navarrete.
It won’t help Cordina to be in a unification fight with Foster because he’ll probably lose, and the money he makes from that bout will not be out of this world retirement type.
Cordina needs a fight with Leigh Wood, Navarrete, or a move up to lightweight to face Shakur Stevenson, Vasily Lomachenko, or Gervonta Davis. If Hearn can wrangle a deal for Cordina to fight Shakur, Loma, or Tank, he should forget about wasting Joe’s time at 130 with fights against Foster or Wood.
Vazquez wore down the 31-year-old Cordina, getting the better of him in the second half and forcing him to flee from the sixth round on. It was an odd sign, Cordina, a guy that some felt was a huge puncher, on his bike, doing all he could to avoid being trapped into exchanges with Vazquez.
“I had Joe winning easy, and I felt like eight, nine, ten or whatever it was; I gave Vazquez three on the bounce to start making it close, and then I had Joe winning the twelfth round, and I had him winning by one or two rounds. I did think it was a close fight,” said Eddie Hearn to iFL TV about the results of last Saturday night’s contest between IBF super featherweight champion Joe Cordina and Edward Vazquez in Monte Carlo.
It’s great that Hearn had Cordina “winning easy,” but the fans saw him losing and chalked it up as a classic example of a champion being given a controversial victory. It doesn’t matter what promoters think about their fighters winning.
The fans decide who won, not the promoter, and in this case, they had Vazquez winning, which is bad for Cordina. However, many of his British fans agreed with the decision, so they’ll still support him, while others will see him as the loser.
“116-112, it was a bit wide to me. It sounds like what you had it,” said Hearn about the two judges that scored it 8-4 in Joe Cordina’s favor. “Look, three neutral judges. No British judges tonight.
“I don’t agree that you’ve got to rip the belt off the champion. You’ve just to got win the fight, really. I thought it was a great fight. I thought Vazquez was tremendous, but I felt Joe edged the fight,” said Hearn.
It would be a good idea for Hearn to hurry up and put Cordina in with the best guy he can get, be it Foster, Wood, or Navarrete, because if he doesn’t, he’s not going to hold onto his IBF 130-lb title for much longer.
If a fringe contender like Vazquez was able to fight him to a standstill, just imagine what someone like Rocky Hernandez, Lamont Roach, or Liam Wilson would do to him. Cordina looked old last Saturday night, and he also looked huge for the super featherweight division.
The size thing could have been the biggest issue for Cordina because he was as big as a 140-lb fighter after rehydrating, and it’s pretty clear that should be campaigning at either lightweight or light welterweight at his age. Cordina has only been a pro since 2017, but he had a long amateur career, so he’s been in the sport for ages.
“I think Joe [Cordina] wants the biggest fight and the most money possible,” Hearn said when asked about the possibility of Vazquez getting a rematch with Cordina.
If Cordina wants the biggest fight possible, he needs to move up to 135 because he won’t get a boatload of dough fighting Foster or Wood. Top Rank probably won’t bother matching their fighter Navarrete against Cordina because he’s not well-known enough to American fans for it to be worth putting on ESPN.
If Navarrete were to fight Cordina, the ratings would be poor on ESPN, as there would be no buzz for that match-up, and they couldn’t put it on PPV because fans wouldn’t want to see it in large numbers. DAZN commentators talked about the attendance last Saturday night being a little over 300 people in Monte Carlo for Cordina’s fight with Vazquez. What does that tell you?
“He’s at that stage of his career now. Whether that’s Leigh Wood, whether that’s O’Shaquie Foster, whether that’s Navarrete.,” said Hearn. “Joe has to roll the dice now in his career, and you’re not necessarily going to see the best of him when he’s not [motivated].
“No excuses. Vazquez was fantastic, but Joe needs to move on to a really big fight next. Yeah, Leigh Wood’s next fight will be in May. If it’s the next fight for both, it’ll be in May. Possibly, we’ve got options,” said Hearn when asked if Wood could fight Josh Warrington in a rematch.
“But there’s a lot of people that might watch that performance [from Cordina], and they might fancy their chances tonight a little bit more than they did before. It might be O’Shaquie Foster, it might be Ben Davison, it might be Leigh Wood. They might look at that and go, ‘Hmm.”
“Listen, don’t rule out a move for Joe Cordina up to 135 at some point. I said I know Ben Davison knows how good Joe Cordina is, and he knows that’s a tough fight for Leigh Wood. But at the same time, they may have watched tonight and gone, ‘Okay.’
“That’s what happens when you have probably an under-par performance. People start dancing their chances to beat you, and that’s good news for Joe Cordina,” said Hearn.