Whether Jorge Arce will finally retire, nobody in the Filipino boxing community gives a damn. What is important is that Nonito “The Filipino Flash” Donaire was able to redeem Filipino boxing in the nick of the time. After the crushing defeat suffered by Manny Pacquiao over Juan Manuel Marquez, Filipinos have a reason to celebrate again.
Arce’s KO in the 3rd round was hailed and praised by the entire Philippines, especially in General Santos City and Sarangani Province where both Donaire and Pacquiao come from. Arce kept taunting Donaire, daring him to come at him. And Donaire did what he wanted. The thunderous left hook that had Arce tumbling down, to the tremendous roar of the crowd.
Donaire and his camp are still probably celebrating at this moment. But make no mistake, they as well as you are already inching to take on the next challenge. The KO on Arce looked great. But the glory from that fight won’t last forever. If Donaire wants to make some real noise in the boxing world, then he will have to take on some real nasty opponents. He has to have fights that will win more fans, make more people believe in his boxing skills.
Because in the boxing world, whoever has more fans sells more tickets. Whoever sells more tickets rakes in more dough. Everyone knows that. Top Rank CEO Bob Arum knows that.
So who should Nonito Donaire fight next? If he doesn’t want to move up in the next division yet, as the WBO superbantam weight champion, he could go out and fight his fellow champions:
1. Abner Mares
– Mares is definitely the guy I would want Donaire to fight next. Abner Mares is the current WBC super-bantamweight champion. He is currently undefeated with a record of 24-0-1 and 13 KOs. Donaire would love to have this fight. He would win the WBC belt again and also be the first to put a mark in the loss column of Mares.
The big problem lies with Golden Boy, promoter of Abner Mares. Top Rank and Golden Boy aren’t exactly in good terms, especially Bob Arum who hates Golden Boy executive Stephen Espinoza. Donaire has already asked Arum to get the fight done. Yet Arum is firm that it will be according to his terms: no co-promoting from Golden Boy.
2. Guillermo Rigondeaux
The problem with this fight is pretty obvious – Rigondeaux’s record. Sure he’s undefeated. But 11 fights, seriously! What were those, kiddie fights! There would be empty seats in Las Vegas if Donaire and Rigondeaux fought right now.
Nevertheless, whoever Nonito Donaire fights next, he should put in the work. Donaire is known as the Filipino Flash for his speed and his power, but I believe he can do even more. I want Donaire to have more footwork, to use the ring more to his advantage. There is no other way for Donaire but up, but to get there he should become better than what he is at present.