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The experts weigh in on Thurman-Chaves 'war'
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Welterweight Keith Thurman on Diego Chaves: "Honestly, I can't wait to see how he's going to try to knock me out."
Florida welterweight Keith "One Time" Thurman has said that he anticipates "heavy missiles coming from both sides" in Saturday's clash with Argentina's hammer-fisted Diego Chaves as part of a Showtime-televised double-header from the AT&T Center in San Antonio.
"In reality, we plan on keeping our eyes wide open in the beginning, because a fighter like that, coming from Argentina, I'm pretty sure that he's going to bring a lot of pride into the ring, and I'm pretty sure that he's going to want to put on a great performance for his country and his countrymen," said Thurman, whose streak of nine consecutive knockouts ended against Zaveck.
"Honestly, I can't wait to see how he's going to try to knock me out, you know what I'm saying? That's part of the excitement in this game and in this sport. I'm definitely willing to step into that danger zone. I believe that this fight is going to be somewhat of a war. I don't know know if it's going to be a non-stop war, but I expect to see heavy missiles coming from both sides."
Meanwhile, Chavez (22-0, 18 knockouts) has expressed confidence that he can come up with his sixth-straight stoppage victory against Thurman (20-0, 18 KOs), a 24-year-old from Clearwater, Fla., who is coming off a unanimous-decision rout of Jan Zaveck in March.
Chaves, 27, will be in only his second fight on American soil, with the first being a six-round unanimous decision over Edvan Dos Santos Barros at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas in March of 2010.
"My fight plan will be to take the center of the ring and don’t let him move forward," said Chaves, whose nickname, La Joya, translates into "The Jewel" in Spanish.
"We know he can counterpunch when he is backing up. The idea is using the left hand a lot, keep him on the defensive, knowing that after the fourth or fifth round he losses steam and that’s when we’ll make him pay for his mistakes."
RingTV.com polled 15 boxing insiders as to what they think will transpire in Thurman-Chaves.
Keith Thurman UD 12 Diego Chaves
I think this is a good match up of unbeaten welterweights with good power and underrated boxing ability. Keith Thurman's got the edge in size, speed, power and athleticism; Chaves is the more fluid boxer and puncher and probably the better counter puncher and combination puncher.
Record: 9-4 [Last pick: Golovkin mid-to-late KO Macklin]
Keith Thurman, UD 12 Diego Chaves: Keith Thurman says he has never heard of Diego Chaves. He’s speaking for a lot of American fans. But beware. Sometimes, the biggest danger lurks in the unknown.
Record:10-3 [Golovkin KO 5 Macklin]
Keith Thurman TKO 8 Diego Chaves: Fans are right to wonder whether Keith Thurman's reputation as a knockout artist will hold up as the quality of his opposition improves. Was his decision win over Jan Zaveck last March a "One Time" thing or a sign that Thurman's power doesn't have quite the same effect on top rated fighters?
Record: 7-6 [Golovkin TKO 9 Macklin]
Keith Thurman KO7 Diego Chaves: When a fight is made between two guys who have a combined record of forty two wins with thirty six knockouts, one considers giving the judges a night off.
Record: 2-1 [Golovkin TKO 7 Macklin]
Lee Groves, RingTV.com