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Old 11-05-2012, 08:17 AM   #1
Bokaj
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Default Why no Benitez-Leonard rematch?

Even though Leonard won by (controversial) stoppage and was well ahead on points, it was still a hard, competitive fight. Had Benitez opened quicker, not suffered that accidental cut and not injured his left hand it might have been a different story.

So why no rematch? Was it ever on the cards, or did it just get caught behind the bigger fights and paydays with Duran and Hearns?
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Old 11-05-2012, 08:53 AM   #2
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Default Re: Why no Benitez-Leonard rematch?

Mr. Bokaj,

Wilfred (Jimmy Jacobs/Bill Cayton) waived the 'rematch clause option' for an
additional $200,000 added to his fight purse.

And, by March 1980 Wilfred coudn't make 147 lbs., with his training regimen.

The Ray Leonard vs. Roberto Duran was in the works by February 1980, and
Wilfred had nowhere to go but up to 154 lbs. in 1980.

Though, Wilfred vs. Ray Leonard at 154 lbs. would have been a better bout for
the 'Wunderkind'.
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Old 11-05-2012, 09:00 AM   #3
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Default Re: Why no Benitez-Leonard rematch?

I felt Ray won it very convincingly.
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Old 11-05-2012, 09:27 AM   #4
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Default Re: Why no Benitez-Leonard rematch?

Scorecards, after 14-Rounds.

Art Lurie.........137-130 (9-3-2 in Rounds)
Harry Gibbs.....136-134 (5-4-5 in Rounds)
Ray Solis........137-133 (6-3-5 in Rounds)

UPI...............139-129 (10-1-3 in Rounds)

All scorecards gave Ray Leonard a 10-8 edge in Round 3, by scoring
a 'flash' knockdown.

I had it 136-133 (6-4-4 in Rounds), also givng Ray Leonard a 10-8 score
in Round 3.
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Old 11-05-2012, 10:11 AM   #5
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Default Re: Why no Benitez-Leonard rematch?

Would have liked a rematch at 154... Leonard wins again though.
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Old 11-05-2012, 10:22 AM   #6
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Default Re: Why no Benitez-Leonard rematch?

Wilfred had just turned 21, when he fought Ray Leonard in November 1979.

Strength wise, the Wilfred Benitez of 1981 and 1982, was more of a complete
fighter.

A close bout for these guys at 154 lbs. from mid-1981 thru the end of 1982.

I wouldn't be suprised with a 15-Round Draw.
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Old 11-05-2012, 10:27 AM   #7
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Default Re: Why no Benitez-Leonard rematch?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Flea Man View Post
I felt Ray won it very convincingly.
Points-wise, yes. I had Leonard winning by at least 5-6 pts, but most rounds were close. You could see that Leonard was very, very tired towards the end, with a puffy face.

In a perfect world they would have had a rematch at 154 after Benitez beat Duran.
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Old 11-05-2012, 10:30 AM   #8
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Default Re: Why no Benitez-Leonard rematch?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Senor Pepe' View Post
Wilfred had just turned 21, when he fought Ray Leonard in November 1979.

Strength wise, the Wilfred Benitez of 1981 and 1982, was more of a complete
fighter.

A close bout for these guys at 154 lbs. from mid-1981 thru the end of 1982.

I wouldn't be suprised with a 15-Round Draw.
Could be.

On the other hand Leonard gained invaluable experience from his fights with Duran and Hearns. He'd also have a mental edge in winning the first one.

If Leonard aquitted himself fully to the fight, I see him winning again. He showed against Kalule that he was robust and powerful, while still very fast, at 154 as well.
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Old 11-05-2012, 12:08 PM   #9
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Default Re: Why no Benitez-Leonard rematch?

I'd love to have seen a rematch at 154 lbs. between the two. It would have been another chessmatch type with Leonard winning again,imo. Maybe on points this time.
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Old 11-05-2012, 12:18 PM   #10
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Default Re: Why no Benitez-Leonard rematch?

I would have loved to have seen a rematch between the two as well, Stevie.
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Old 11-05-2012, 12:22 PM   #11
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Default Re: Why no Benitez-Leonard rematch?

I think Ray would beat him again.

Benitez is the more complete technician, but he was simply too slow and stationary to outpoint Ray Leonard. Ray worked AROUND Benitez and scored beautifully.

Radar just couldn't keep up. I don't think he ever could, fine a fighter as he is. Sometimes, pure athleticism is that irreplaceable ingredient that decides fights. Wilfredo always gives a noble account of himself and lands plenty, but I don't see him ever getting over. I had Ray up 6 points, I think. Stoppage was awful, but the 10-8 round should have blown the fight wide open, that would have been a one-sided decision.
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Old 11-05-2012, 12:26 PM   #12
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Default Re: Why no Benitez-Leonard rematch?

Remember the post-Leonard 'Wilfred'

In 1980, more flat-footed, and delivering punches with much more power
versus (Johnny Turner, Tony Chiaverini and Pete Ranzany).

May 1981, dismantling Mauric Hope. And in November 1981, scoring a
15-Round Decision over a very good Carlos Santos.

If Wilfred was a 3-1 Underdog again, I'd take that bet.
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Old 11-05-2012, 12:31 PM   #13
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Default Re: Why no Benitez-Leonard rematch?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Senor Pepe' View Post
Remember the post-Leonard 'Wilfred'

In 1980, more flat-footed, and delivering punches with much more power
versus (Johnny Turner, Tony Chiaverini and Pete Ranzany).

May 1981, dismantling Mauric Hope. And in November 1981, scoring a
15-Round Decision over a very good Carlos Santos.

If Wilfred was a 3-1 Underdog again, I'd take that bet.
More flat-footed hurts him tactically to an immeasurable degree against Leonard on the attack, the same way he struggled getting out of the way of all the hurt that was sent his way the first time.
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Old 11-05-2012, 12:42 PM   #14
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Default Re: Why no Benitez-Leonard rematch?

Quote:
Originally Posted by MagnaNasakki View Post
I think Ray would beat him again.

Benitez is the more complete technician, but he was simply too slow and stationary to outpoint Ray Leonard. Ray worked AROUND Benitez and scored beautifully.
Technical chess-match as it was, Leonard still managed to make ample use of his superior strength as well.

Benitez was more defensively skilled, but Leonard had the speed to get off quicker and the strength and power to be happpy with the exchange of taking one in order to give one.

He also worked Benitez' body well from an early stage, which paid off in the last third of the fight.

I think things would have been pretty much the same at 154, with the difference perhaps that Benitez would have started off quicker and not been hampered by an accidental cut. Could have made it closer.
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Old 11-05-2012, 01:52 PM   #15
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Default Re: Why no Benitez-Leonard rematch?

Leonard would always beat Benitez to the punch, with harder shots at that.
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