‘Juan Ma’ Lopez And Yuriorkis Gamboa Produce Exciting Fights And Chin Music

Juan Ma(nuel) Lopez (28-0, 25 KOs) and Yuriorkis Gamboa (17-0, 15 KOs) are not just interesting-sounding names. They are "big little men," skilled enough to invoke memories of the legendary trio of featherweights named Marco Antonio Barrera, Erik Morales, and of course, Manny Pacquiao. Look no further than their impressive wins this past weekend to understand why so many boxing pundits are so high on them.

And they appear to be on a collision course. How soon? Only Bob Arum knows since he promotes both fighters. And if he’s smart, as he typically is on such matters, he will let this one marinate like some well-seasoned pernil. Superfight-hungry fans would surely welcome this fight in light of recent "non-events."

But before we get too far ahead of ourselves, there is one thing that could get in the way of this scintillating superfight. It won’t be random blood testing. It won’t be disputes over the purse split. The answer lies right under their noses.

Their Chins

With all due respect to the very capable Elio Rojas (21-1, 13 KOs) and Chris John (43-0-2, 22 KOs), both Gamboa and Lopez are faster and more skilled than any other boxers in the featherweight division. However, the great equalizer could be their chins. Just in case you haven’t noticed, neither one of these guys has proven to be Julio Cesar Chavez in the chin department.

I’ll cut both boxers some slack because they are both young. And maybe these shaky moments are mere bumps on the road towards super-stardom. However, it’s hard for me to forget that "Juan Ma" made journeyman Roger Mtagwa look like he had anvils in his gloves in their fight last year, and that Gamboa has been dropped four times already by journeymen. They both have shown a penchant for producing chin music. Let’s hope they save these tunes for one another.

TNT isn’t the only channel that knows drama. If these two fighters meet, with their excellent power, speed and leaky defenses, HBO PPV will know drama too. Juan Manuel Lopez vs Yuriorkis Gamboa promises to be that kind of fight so long as both boxers keep their hands up and their chins tucked in the meantime.


  1. Orlando says

    The thing with each fighter is that we’ve seen Lopez get rocked pretty badly by Mtagwa. While Gamboa has visited the canvas on more than one occassion, we haven’t seen the jelly-legged, glazed look in his eyes that we saw from Lopez. Granted, Lopez stayed on his feet and battled valiantly, but against a more skilled technician, which Gamboa appears to be, he might have been out of there. As you stated, the fact that both are big punchers anfd have suspect chins will make for a very eventful fight when they square off. I hope it’s the next fight; some time in the summer.

  2. yordan says

    I am sure that Gamboa will defeat JuanMa with no sweat.This guy may have a few fights as a pro, however, his technique, speed and the Cuban experience and style will certainly impose over JuanMa. I will die to see Gamboa vs. Pacquio. I am not enthusiastic with Gamboa vs JuanMa, since JuanMa is just a steppingstone for this Cuban great fighter.

  3. says

    Wow, I have never heard JuanMa referred to as a mere stepping stone! That’s big talk Yordan. Hopefully, we’ll find out if what you say is true very soon.

  4. says

    No less than the Ring Magazine recognizes the Pacman as the best P4P and fighter of the decade at the same time.Bert Sugar and most notable boxing experts do so.How can Ducky Mayweather be worthy of the same when he chooses who he fights?All he cares is about the money he gets but not giving that money’s worth to the people who paid for it.He will be just a footnote to the Pacman’s history after the true P4P is long and gone but all is not lost for the Moneyman for he got to live in the time of the Pacman.

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