Former World Lightweight Champion and one of the most feared boxers of the era, Roberto Duran, challenges the recently crowned WBC World Welterweight Champion, Sugar Ray Leonard.  More info below...

Roberto Duran had an astonishing 71-1 record coming into this fight with Sugar Ray Leonard.  He had started his career back in 1968 at just 16 years old!  In 1972 he beat Ken Buchanan by TKO for the WBA World Lightweight title, defending it 12 times over the next 6 years.  In 1978 he also won the WBC version of the World Lightweight Championship from long time rival, Esteban De Jesus, before vacating both titles in 1979 to focus on the welterweight division.  His only loss was way back in 1972.

Sugar Ray Leonard was a 1976 Olympic gold medal winner and the current WBC World Welterweight Champion.  For the first 2 years of his career, many had wondered if Sugar Ray was nothing more than a made for TV fighter... That was until he beat Wilfred Benitez for the welterweight world title in late 1979, showing everybody he was not just a flashy fighter but also a technically sound one as well.  In his very first defense of the belt, Sugar Ray showed his power by knocking out former EBU Welterweight Champion, Dave "Boy" Green, in the 4th round.  Sportswriters, betting agents and boxing fans were mixed in their opinion of who would win.  Although Sugar Ray was a 9-5 favorite, he had never fought anybody with such devastating punching power or somebody who could withstand a punch like Roberto Duran. 

The fight itself was a classic.  A memorable historic battle between the boxer and the brawler.   It was a fight that round after round brought the crowd of 46,317 to its feet, neither man backing down from the challenge.  This was to be Leonard's downfall however...  Duran wanted Leonard to trade punches, he wanted Leonard to stand there face-to-face, and that's exactly what happened.  This was a style of fighting Duran was use to, it was HIS style.  Leonard tried to match Duran at his own game and paid the price by losing a 15 round decision. 

In the rematch, Sugar Ray would get his revenge, out boxing and embarrassing Duran to the point where he would famously quit in the 8th round.  9 years later, the long awaited rubber match would occur, with Sugar Ray once again prevailing over 12 rounds in a bloody but one sided fight.  The third fight against Duran would prove to be Sugar Ray's last victory as a boxer.

Duran's career was up and down in terms of success following the rematch.  He lost to Wilfred Benetiz and Kirkland Laing before winning the WBA World Super Welterweight title from Davey Moore but losing it in the very first defense to Thomas Hearns.  He failed to beat Marvin Hagler for the Undisputed World Middleweight belts 1983 but did win the WBC World Middleweight belt in 1989 from Iran Barkley before once again losing it in the first defense to Sugar Ray Leonard.  Duran would challenge for the IBC and WBA Middleweight titles during the 1990's however he was far past his prime and unable to win another world title.  He retired with a 103-16 record after 33 years in the ring.
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PALABRAS CLAVES: BOXING Roberto Duran vs Sugar Ray Leonard