November 28, 2010
LAS VEGAS _ Michael Katsidis lived up to his reputation as the new generation Arturo Gatti, but like the legendary brawler, the Aussie comes up a little short against the best of the best. Katsidis moved forward the entire fight and forced Juan Manuel Marquez to brawl with him. The Mexican came off the deck from a flash knockdown in the third to wear down Katsidis before stopping him with 2:14 left in the ninth.
Marquez (52-5, 38 KOs) turned from the hunted to the hunter when he landed several good uppercuts around 1:44 left in the ninth. Katsidis immediately got on his horse, trying to move side-to-side. A composed Marquez threw roughly 30 punches in the next minute with most of them landing. Katsidis wasn't firing back, so referee Kenny Bayless stepped in to save the ailing fighter. Some in attendance thought the stoppage was premature.
The fight came under tough circumstances for Katsidis (27-2, 22 KOs). The 30-year-old recently lost his older brother Stathi. An accomplished thoroughbred jockey, Katsidis, 31, was found dead in his home in mid-October. When asked about it following the fight, Michael got a little emotional as did HBO ring announcer Larry Merchant.
It wasn't all smooth sailing for Marquez, who ate a counter left and went down with just over two minutes left in the third.
Marquez got up well before the count of 10 and fought brilliantly the rest of the round. His defense was excellent as Katsidis had a tough time hitting him. Meanwhile, after being dumped on his keester, Marquez came back to land 22-of-29 punches in the round.
The fight went back into Marquez's hands the rest of the way. Katsidis had absorbed a ton of body shots throughout the first five rounds. In rounds 6-8, Katsidis' hands started to drop. He was getting popped with dozens of shots. Marquez body, head combinations were awesome throughout the fight. He also got Katsidis off-balance was by firing off five and six punches at a time.
Compubox gave the big nod to Marquez. He outlanded Katsidis 327-194. Marquez was successful on an amazing 52 percent of his shots. Katsidis was bruised badly around both eyes, clearly the result of getting nailed by 214-of-338 power shots (63 percent).
The Yahoo! boxing blog had it 77-74 for Marquez entering the ninth. The judges had it 78-74, 77-74 and 76-75.