Martinez vs. Murray Preview

By Robert Ecksel on April 24, 2013
Martinez vs. Murray Preview
"Sergio is a great fighter,” said Murray, “and I have nothing but the utmost respect for him."


On Saturday we’ll be treated to several fights on dueling cable networks. In our competitive world and archly competitive sport, it almost makes sense that HBO and Showtime would go head-to-head as often as they do. But it of course doesn’t make sense, not as far as fight fans are concerned. Those who cannot be ringside at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn or make it to Club Atlético Vélez Sarsfield in Buenos Aires get to choose which of the two cards they’d rather watch, or failing that, they can indulge their ADHD by clutching the remote.

On HBO, Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez (50-2-2, 28 KOs) makes his long awaited return to the rings of Argentina, where he last fought in 2002, when he defends his WBC middleweight title against WBA interim middleweight champion Martin Martinez (25-0-1, 11 KOs).

It will be Maravilla’s first fight since he dismantled Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. on Sept. 15 2012. He desperately wanted that fight, and it may be the pinnacle of his career. Although he was a late starter, at age 38 Martinez may be winding down and his “Homecoming” against Murray suggests that after two or three more fights he might call it a day. But that day has not come, and it will be a sad day when it does, because however inflated Martinez’s accomplishments may or may not be, he is a class act who always added a touch of dignity to our sport.

“I might be 38 years old of age,” said Martinez, “but my body does not feel like it. I take care of myself mentally and physically. I am constantly in the gym working out even when I do not have a fight lined up in order to keep my body in shape. Also my fighting style has allowed me to not age in the boxing ring. Some people have said Murray is facing me at the right time. Well, those people are in for a surprise on April 27.”

We love surprises as much as the next guy, but expect no surprises Saturday night.

There are questions about Martinez’s opponent, Martin Murray, just as there were questions about Darren Barker and Matthew Macklin, who he fought in 2011 and 2012 respectively. Those questions have nothing to do with the fact that the fighters are from the UK, but concern their viability as credible opponents.

“Sergio is a great fighter,” said Murray, “easily the best middleweight in the world, and I have nothing but the utmost respect for him. All that being said though, I didn’t come here to lose. Whatever Sergio brings on Saturday night I will be ready for it. I’ll need to raise my game to beat him, but myself and my team know that’s something we’re very capable of doing. Winning this will make me the number one middleweight in the world and set up some more huge opportunities. Being on HBO is an absolute honor. It is the biggest stage in the world. There’s stardom to be had, but I don’t box for that. I’m doing this to prove I’m the best middleweight in the world and for the future of my wife and kids.”

Martinez won’t take Murray lightly. Unlike some other pound-for-pound claimants, he has studied his opponent in advance of the fight.

“We have watched tapes of Martin Murray’s past fights,” said Maravilla. “He is a come forward boxer and will give me a good challenge in the ring, but it will not be enough. The way I see this fight playing out in my mind, I will KO Murray in the eighth round.”

The Sergio Martinez vs. Martin Murray telecast begins at 8:30 PM ET/PT on HBO. Undercard action includes a fight between welterweights Luis Carlos Abregu (34-1, 28 KOs) and Antonin Decarie (28-1, 8 KOs), and a heavyweight showdown between Chris Arreola (35-2, 30 KOs) and Bermane Stiverne (21-1-1, 20 KOs).

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  1. Ted 05:37pm, 04/25/2013

    Martinez says, “... I am very confident. I know that the expectations are very high, but I am training at a very high level and I am very confident that I am going to have a great fight on Saturday. This Saturday, this fight will end by knock out. My training and my confidence are at the highest level, even higher than the last fight with Chavez and therefore, I predict a knock out this Saturday night.”

  2. Mike Casey 07:56am, 04/25/2013

    Yeah, I like George too, Ted. Kats is a nice bloke with the heart of a lion, but a few pals should really tell him it’s time to leave the stage now.

  3. Ted 07:52am, 04/25/2013

    They were calling Katsidis a pom killer for a while, that is, until he met up with Ricky Burns who beat him in one of my very best predictions. I felt that The Kat had just taken too much punishment.The Brits have some very fine mid-weight fighters who are flying under the radar. They will soon break out. Groves is one of my favorites.

  4. Mike Casey 07:16am, 04/25/2013

    Meinhard, I think that’s about as well as he can do. No, Ted, ‘pom killer’ was the exclusive reserve of the Aussies when they used to thrash us for decades at cricket. Now that we’re thrashing them, they have mellowed a bit! Not sure what the Argentinians call us, but they’re in a big hissy fit with us again over the Falkland Islands. They usually revive this old chestnut as a decoy for their angry citizens when their economy is getting bashed.

  5. Meinhard Schmidt 03:45pm, 04/24/2013

    hahaha mike… i wish that too.  i think murray will go the rounds, losing a lopsided decision.

  6. Ted 02:40pm, 04/24/2013

    Pom Killer?

  7. Mike Casey 02:01pm, 04/24/2013

    I do wish this annoyingly talented chap from the Argentine wouldn’t keep picking on Englishmen!

  8. Clarence George 12:00pm, 04/24/2013

    I agree.  Martinez’s prediction of an eighth-round KO is on target…maybe even by the seventh.

  9. Ted 11:41am, 04/24/2013

    KO for Martinez-8th round

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