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Roman "Chocolatito" Gonzalez vs Ricardo "El Finito" Lopez

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Roman "Chocolatito" Gonzalez vs Ricardo "El Finito" Lopez Empty Roman "Chocolatito" Gonzalez vs Ricardo "El Finito" Lopez

Post by hazharrison on Sat 20 Aug 2016, 7:46 am

Gonzalez is 45-0 (38). He has won world titles at straw weight, junior flyweight and flyweight (lineal). A masterful infighter, he boasts explosive power and perpetual motion. Currently rated the best fighter in the world at any weight.

Lopez retired with a record of 51-0-1 (38). He reigned as the lineal straw weight champion for close to ten years before stepping up to win a world title at junior flyweight. Tall, rangy with a dynamite punch, Lopez was a classic boxer - a perfect fighting machine - blessed with both poise and patience.

Neither Gonzalez or Lopez lost a bout (either pro or amateur).

So, who was the greatest fighter? And who would have won a head to head at junior flyweight?


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Roman "Chocolatito" Gonzalez vs Ricardo "El Finito" Lopez Empty Re: Roman "Chocolatito" Gonzalez vs Ricardo "El Finito" Lopez

Post by 88Chris05 on Mon 22 Aug 2016, 7:41 am

Nice one, Haz. We'll have to be discussing these questions quite a bit in the coming years if Gonzalez keeps up the tear he's currently on. Once upon a time Lopez's place as boxing greatest 'little little man' was unquestionable. Less so now.

Styles-wise, I like Lopez to beat Gonzalez in a hypothetical match up. It's funny, but I've always thought that Lopez at his best was like Juan Manuel Marquez, but with the added bonus of greater fluidity in his movement and footwork. As fate would have it, when I watched Gonzalez dismantle Yaegashi I found myself thinking that I was essentially watching a right-handed version of Pacquiao; a bit short on jabs, but blurring hand speed, a phenomenal engine and punches from unusual angles that are almost impossible to defend against at times.

The Marquez-Pacquiao similarities are a bit of a forecast in to why I'd pick Lopez to win a decision (I’m working on the belief that, despite the official form line, Pacquiao came off a clear second best to Marquez in their four-fight series). Lopez has faced more punchers in his career out of the two – which I’ll get to in a moment - and I'm not sure that Gonzalez would be savvy enough to deal with the kind of traps that Lopez was so good at setting. Gonzalez has been able to work a lot of opponents over on the ropes and has been able to trade with them without putting much emphasis on defence, and I don’t think he’d get away with that against Lopez. Ricardo had the sharpest left hook in the business, a granite chin and showed against guys like Petelo that he could stray from his usual counter-punching style to up the pressure and fight more aggressively if he needed to.

On records, though, from a personal point of view I suspect I might end up placing Gonzalez higher of the pair when all is said and done, despite me believing that Lopez was the greater talent. I think Lopez’s wins as of now are better, especially considering that, if the shape of Alvarez and Sorjaturong, he’s faced the more dangerous offensive fighters, but Gonzalez has already conquered the Flyweight division to go along with his 105 and 108 lb titles, something that Lopez was puzzlingly reluctant to do – and I think it should harm his legacy a little more than it does.

He’d already graduated to the Flyweight division (where he holds the WBC and Ring belt, and has beaten the guy who holds the WBA and WBO belts already at a lower weight, lest we forget) at the age of 27 – an age at which Lopez was still only really known to the sport’s obsessive fans, was still hanging around at 105 lb and only really had Sorjaturong as a top class win on his ledger. Even then, the Sorjaturong win didn’t really start to look significant until he unexpectedly toppled another Gonzalez, Humberto, at Light-Flyweight a couple of years later.

Lopez eventually moved up from Strawweight to Light-Fly, but didn’t do it until the Light-Flyweight division was pretty much a waste ground. Myung Woo-Yuh, Humberto Gonzalez and Michael Carbajal were all only 3 lb north of Lopez in the first half of his Strawweight reign, but he stayed put. When he went up, his most significant win in his new weight class was against Petelo, who himself was now moving up and had only become (possibly) the leading Strawweight because Lopez had absconded the division. Given the selective demographics of these weight classes, where fighters who aren’t from Latin America or the Far East usually don’t get a look-in, and how thinly spread the quality can be because of these tiny weight differences, I find that pretty hard to stomach for an all-time great. That’s not to mention the likes of Arbachakov and Johnson at Flyweight.

While I’d probably take Lopez’s win over Alvarez as the best either man has, Gonzalez has wins in the shape of Yaegashi and Estrada that would feature pretty highly up Lopez’s list. If he beats Cuadras to win a strap at 115 lb then that’s even more ground conquered, and if he could then unify against the division’s supposed next big thing in Inoue he’d be pretty much there, ahead of Lopez, in my opinion.

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