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Roman Gonzalez hoping there are extra profession chapters to be written

By Oscar Decide

A MAGICIAN won’t ever reveal their secrets and techniques. As soon as they carry out a magic trick, leaving their viewers open-mouthed and, fairly merely, in awe of their brilliance, there is no such thing as a have to preserve the curtains raised; their work has, relatively emphatically, been accomplished.

In fact, any type of clarification after such a complete show would solely shatter their mystique. And it’s this mystique which, in any case, allows them to ship a spectacle that evokes each astonishment and intrigue, all the time leaving one thing to the creativeness.

When contemplating this, it may very well be stated that Roman ‘Chocolatito’ Gonzalez – a generational expertise and actually formidable competitor, exhibiting few indicators of degradation – will not be up to now faraway from a magician, with each jaw-dropping manoeuvre pulled from a seemingly bottomless bag of methods.

Returning to the ring for his 56th outing, the previous pound-for-pound king will tackle Colombia’s Rober Barrera in a 10-round bantamweight conflict this Friday (July 12).

The pair will collide in Managua, Nicaragua, with Chocolatito headlining in his dwelling city for the primary time since 2015.

Nevertheless, when viewing Gonzalez’s phenomenal profession via an neutral lens, one that’s neither rose-tinted nor harshly important, the results of this weekend’s showdown appears considerably unimportant.

What issues most is that, via his dazzling performances, the Nicaraguan has captivated followers for almost 20 years, injecting loads of pleasure into the decrease divisions, which, with out his efforts, should be craving for a level of curiosity.

Ed Mulholland/Matchroom

However what’s the secret behind his longevity? How has he stood the take a look at of time when others in and round his weight have both fallen sufferer to put on and tear or chosen to retire after reaching their mid-30s?

Properly, his type is an apparent place to begin. At the start, it is very important spotlight that Chocolatito will not be, and by no means has been, probably the most athletically gifted fighter.

Whereas 80 per cent of his wins have come by means of knockout, the 37-year-old is greatest identified for stopping his opponents with methodical beatdowns versus explosive counters or razor-sharp flurries.

He’s a grasp at slowing down the tempo of a combat, giving himself extra time to arrange a barrage of assaults.

Then, as his opponent begins to retreat, Gonzalez begins to pile on the stress by slicing off the ring – utilising his superior footwork – earlier than beating them into submission with an accumulation of pictures.

By having an consciousness of his limitations, the four-weight world champion is ready to use his ring generalship, vary management and timing to nullify any athletic benefit that different fighters could have.

Furthermore, with much less emphasis on pace, his ageing physique is provided to punch fluidly and precisely, eradicating the necessity to produce fast-twitch actions which might be conducive to touchdown haymakers.

Along with his type, Chocolatito could have extended the twilight years of his profession by campaigning in additional comfy weight divisions.

It’s no secret that, for any fighter, slicing weight may be the hardest side of their coaching camp. The psychological fortitude that’s required to beat the brutal strategy of eradicating each ounce of water from one’s physique is past what most individuals can comprehend.

Gonzalez gained his first world title at minimumweight when he was simply 22 years previous. Whereas the 105 lbs restrict could have suited him on the time, he was by no means going to remain in that division for greater than two years.

Certain sufficient, his most notable wins – in addition to a compelling trilogy with Juan Francisco Estrada – got here when he moved as much as increased divisions the place, regardless of being barely undersized, his physique was by no means depleted from a gruelling weight reduce.

Roman Gonzalez

Tom Hogan/K2

Now, Chocolatito has the chance to develop into a five-weight world champion, a showstopping feat that might outshine anybody with a wand and cape.

So, whereas his greatness is already rubber-stamped, there may very well be extra pages, probably even chapters, of his exceptional story which might be but to be written.

John Anderson
John Anderson
John Anderson is a seasoned sports journalist with over 15 years of experience covering the NFL, NBA, and MLB. A graduate of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, John has worked with ESPN, Sports Illustrated, and The New York Times. His insightful analysis and in-depth reporting have earned him multiple awards in sports journalism.


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