Anselmo Moreno vs. Javier Nicolas Chacon: Preview and Prediction for Title Fight
Anselmo "Chemito" Moreno is probably the best fighter you've never seen, and on Saturday night in Panama City, he'll make the 12th defense of his WBA Bantamweight Championship, taking on Javier Nicolas Chacon of Argentina.
Moreno has held the WBA title since 2008, and his only loss during that stretch came in 2012 when he jumped up in weight to challenge Abner Mares for a super bantamweight title. He's only fought once since that loss—a lopsided unanimous decision over William Urina last August—and has been flying a bit under the radar.
Chacon, 32, is rated the No. 11 contender by the WBA and has never competed outside his native Argentina. His level of competition indicates nothing that should have earned him such a lofty station, much less a title challenge. Unless he's better than advertised, he'll enter the ring as a substantial underdog.
Read on for a complete preview and prediction for Moreno vs. Chacon.
Tale of the Tape
All stats and information per BoxRec.com.
|Anselmo Moreno||Javier Nicholas Chacon|
|Record||34-2-1, 12 KO||19-1, 4 KO|
|Weight||117 lbs (last fight)||118.5 lbs (last fight)|
|Hometown||El Martillo, Panama||Las Heras, Mendoza, Argentina|
|Last Fight||UD 12 William Urina (8/10/13)||UD 6 Roberto Carlos Mario Marin (9/7/13)|
The WBA bantamweight champion is one of the most skilled and underrated fighters in the sport. He flies under the radar, largely because he's spent most of his career outside of the United States and lost in his highest-profile bout.
Moreno can box your ears off, and he's been a world champion for just less than six years. This fight isn't that significant for him, and he's likely just biding his time until something better appears on the horizon.
It's a bit of a mystery how the 32-year-old Argentine even arrived at this opportunity. He's only rated No. 11 by the WBA (and even that's a joke), has never fought outside of Argentina and hasn't beaten a single opponent of note.
Of his 20 foes in the ring, 14 came in with losing records (some were bad even by that standard) and one was making his professional debut. Nothing in his resume suggest that he'll have the stuff to compete with, much less beat, one of the better technical fighters in the sport on Saturday night.
The WBA champion is one of the slickest fighters in boxing. He has a great sense of distance, knows where he is in the ring at all times and almost never presents openings for a foe to land cleanly.
Moreno is long and rangy for a fighter in the lower weight classes. He uses that height and reach to keep the fight on the outside, where he is most comfortable. Often, his fights aren't the most exciting, but he's efficient and gets the job done.
You won't find many flaws in his defensive game either. He dodges and slips punches with the best of them.
As you can see in the film above, Chacon seems to prefer fighting a similar box-and-move style. He uses his jab to keep distance and disrupt his opponent's offensive rhythm. He moves his body a lot and gives his foe tough angles.
Chacon looks for opportunities to counterpunch, and despite his paltry knockout numbers, he has some decent pop on his straight right hand.
The way to beat Moreno is to do what Mares did in their super bantamweight title bout in 2012: Get inside, rough him up, maybe foul a bit and make things uncomfortable for him. The Panamanian champion doesn't have much punching power—12 knockouts in 34 career victories—and has an aversion to infighting.
Against fighters who can outmuscle him on the inside and make it an ugly fight, he's vulnerable.
The Argentine challenger, like his foe on Saturday night, doesn't have much in the way of power-punching ability. If anything, he has even less power than Moreno, and that's saying something.
With just four stoppages among his 19 victories, Chacon doesn't seem to have much that can trouble the champion. And he's fought an atrocious string of opponents to get this shot. Of his 19 wins, 14 foes came in with records significantly below the .500 mark, and he's only had one fight that was scheduled for more than six rounds.
Anselmo Moreno Will Win If...
Moreno will win this fight if his car arrives at the right arena on Saturday.
Maybe that’s being unfair to Chacon...it would help if Moreno brought his boxing gloves and trunks as well.
He's simply too good, slick and tricky for his woefully overmatched foe. Look for him to control the fight from the outside, leave Chacon no openings for offense and pop him whenever he tries to get in range.
Moreno will win this fight with ease if he sticks to the game plan and does what he does well.
So long as he keeps the fight on the outside, boxes effectively and frustrates his foe with long, rangy shots, he'll have an easy night on Saturday.
Javier Nicholas Chacon Will Win If....
It's never a good idea to completely dismiss the chances of any fighter. Boxing is the theater of the absurd, and without upsets, some of the sport's greatest stars would never have been born.
It was originally tempting to say that Chacon's best chance of winning this bout was if Moreno were struck by lightning or hit by a truck in between rounds. But that's unfair.
Chacon needs to find his way inside—which is not his normal style—and make this a rough, ugly affair for the champion. He needs to stick in Moreno's chest, land hard shots to the body and hope to wear him down and force mistakes.
If he can do that—which is very unlikely—then he has an outside shot of scoring the upset.
And the Winner Will Be...
Anselmo Moreno will win this fight, and he'll do it with ease. Nothing in his opponent's resume indicates he belongs here or will be a threat on fight night.
The champ is one of the best in the world at keeping distance, fighting effectively and efficiently from the outside and leaving few opportunities for an opponent to damage him.
Nothing in this fight suggests that will change this time around, and this has the feel of a champion who is biding his time against an "opponent" until something more significant arrives.
The Panamanian champion will retain his title for the 12th time, and he'll do it without breaking much of a sweat.
Look for a boxing match, not a ton of excitement and another Moreno unanimous-decision win.
Prediction: Moreno UD 12 Chacon (118-110)