Saturday, March 15, Juan Manuel Lopez (34-3) defeated Daniel Ponce De Leon (45-6) in a fascinating rematch in which both men were knocked down. The bout was held at the Coliseo Ruben Rodriguez in Bayamon, PR and an under card fight on the Danny Garcia vs. Mauricio Herrera card. for a minor title, The WBO International junior lightweight title.
For Lopez, the victory is enormous as it has been evident that his chin is very suspect and has not held up well against top level opponents. With losses to Mickey Garcia and Orlando Salido, Lopez was in desperate need of a win to show the boxing world that he can still contend on a high level.
Consequently, it is likely that Lopez will get another opportunity at a notable contender that could put him in place to contend for another world title. However, there will still be many questions as to how Lopez will fair in the junior lightweight division.
It is no secret that Lopez possesses a weak chin along with an unimpressive defense that has been exposed by some of boxing's best. Though, it is also evident that Lopez has power that makes any fight intriguing and dangerous as he could end any fight with one punch.
On the other hand, Ponce De Leon takes a significant step back as he has lost 2 of his last 3 fights. Even more, the two losses have come by way of knockout in which Lopez was preserved as a fighter on the way down that an improved De Leon should defeat.
In the end, Lopez gets the opportunity to revive his career and will likely get a chance to fight for a world title. It is still evident that Lopez has many flaws as he was also knocked down in the 2nd round, but he also showed that he has the power to pose a threat for any contender. Boxing fans should look for Lopez to be on another televised card in the near future, but should not get their hopes up just yet with such a weak chin on display.