Juan Francisco Estrada avenged one of his two career losses on Saturday and defeated Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez by a separate decision in an entertaining exchange of blows. The judges’ scorecards were a matter of guesswork; While no one had much to say about the 115-113 points each fighter received, the 117-111 score for Estrada that gave him the win raised some eyebrows.
The win set the stage for the double world title list Estrada, which was slated to face Srisaket Sor Rungvisai in a trilogy battle later that year. Rungvisai won his own fight the night before Estrada’s victory, and with the balance between the two fighters, the boxing world is waiting to see who will emerge with the decisive victory.
Gonzalez, who could have defeated Estrada for the second time if a few tight laps had been scored differently, will have to wait and see what comes next. While fight fans would surely love to see a Gonzalez and Estrada trilogy bout after the quality of their first two fights, Rungvisai is the mandatory challenger and likely won’t step aside. For his part, promoter Eddie Hearn had some strong opinions about the results of the night and what he wants to see next.
– Eddie Hearn (@EddieHearn) March 14, 2021
Estrada-Gonzalez 2 was one of three title fights on the map on Saturday in Dallas. Jessica McCaskill defeated Cecilia Braekhus for the second time in seven months to successfully defend her undisputed welterweight championship. Your next fight could be bigger.
Cameron Wolfe and Ben Baby break down the biggest questions emerging from Saturday’s fight.
Did the right fighter win Estrada-Gonzalez 2?
After a hard-fought battle, either Juan Francisco Estrada (left) or Roman Gonzalez could have left the winner on Saturday and it would have felt right. Ed Mulholland / Matchroom
I had the fight with a tie between 114 and 114, but each fighter had a legitimate argument for a win between 115 and 113. The 117-111 Estrada card was outrageous. So yeah, I feel good about an Estrada win, but I would have felt the same way about a Gonzalez win.
CompuBox had Gonzalez ahead in every category except body punching, so I can see there might be some people who thought he deserved the win. But there wasn’t a time in the fight when I thought Gonzalez was in clear control.
Both guys had their rallies and it was set evenly, with a staggering 2,529 shots of action and impressive counter-blow. After this match, no one should cry over robbery anymore. We should both praise both warriors for a fight of the quality of the year and hope that we don’t have to wait eight years for the trilogy. – Wolfe
Where does this fight belong in each of their careers?
It’s hard to definitely put this fight into perspective, but this one is certainly up there for both of them.
This fight had almost everything one could hope for in a boxing match. They had two champions who, according to CompuBox, threw 2,529 strokes together, a division record. It was a rematch that lasted eight years and an outcome that could have been achieved in a number of ways.
Ultimately, Estrada got the decision and revenge for losing the first fight, but it will surely be one of the most memorable moments of any of her stellar careers. For Estrada, the win gives his résumé the boost it needs and could potentially help him attract a larger percentage of casual boxing fans. In Gonzalez’s case, he showed that even after more than 50 professional fights, he is more than capable of putting on a great performance against the best junior bantamweights in the world. – Infant
What would you like to see next for Gonzalez after a tough SD loss on the scorecards?
While it will have to wait for at least one more fight in the meantime, the appetite for a trilogy fight between Estrada and Gonzalez certainly grew after Saturday’s fight. Ed Mulholland / Matchroom
It seems certain that we will get Estrada Rungvisai 3 next, and after that one stepped aside so we can get the war on Saturday, it is deserved. That means Gonzalez must find a new worthy opponent while waiting for either of them in a trilogy battle of his own.
Frankly, Gonzalez has nothing more to prove for his legacy other than fighting Estrada and / or Rungvisai after all. But if he’d rather stay active and on the hunt than wait, it would be fascinating to see Gonzalez win another title against a new opponent like the WBO junior bantamweight title, Kazuto Ioka, or the IBF belt holder Jerwin Ancajas fights. – Wolfe
How would Estrada-Gonzalez 3 play out if it happened across the board?
Right now I’m giving Estrada the edge. The champion essentially fought Gonzalez’s fight and adjusted it in performance; Estrada threw a career high of 1,212 hits, according to CompuBox. And while Estrada failed to land his thrusts at a steady rate, he managed to get more than enough hit with his power strokes to express victory (despite what this 117-111 might be trying to tell you).
Any advantage that Estrada, 30, could have over the legendary Gonzalez is very slim, however. Even at 33, Gonzalez still has a lot in the tank and has only lost to two fighters in his professional career – Estrada and Rungvisai (twice). After another thrilling fight against Estrada, it only makes sense to have a third and final fight to end the grudge game in a wonderful series.
A £ 147 showdown between Jessica McCaskill and the undisputed two-parter Claressa Shields is best for both of them
Jessica McCaskill, left, controlled most of her fight against Cecilia Braekhus and successfully defended her undisputed welterweight championship on Saturday night. Ed Mulholland / Matchroom
Claressa Shields has not had anything like it in years. The two-time Olympic gold medalist and undisputed junior middle and middleweight champion finally has one in Jessica McCaskill. McCaskill revealed she could be Shield’s toughest competition after beating Cecilia Braekhus in her rematch to maintain her status as the undisputed welterweight champion.
A Shields-McCaskill matchup makes sense for Shields. McCaskill has done enough with two wins over Braekhus to become a champion and viable opponent for Shields, who recently beat Marie Eve Dicaire.
The biggest obstacle to this fight? The difference in weight. Shields currently fights in the 154-pound division and was up to 167 years old in her professional career. To challenge McCaskill, she will likely have to hit the 147 pound welterweight limit, which is the toughest McCaskill has struggled at.
Every fighter should also have significant cash to spend on women’s boxing, which means that everyone involved must do their part to make it a financial success. And this is where the fight could be a real selling point for Shields.
McCaskill talks a lot of rubbish and has a personality that can sell a big fight. Shields is fresh from producing a pay-per-view event for women. If Shields is looking to further improve the profile of women’s boxing, a possible fight or rivalry against McCaskill could give it a massive boost. It’s the type of payout that could be worth the risk. – Infant