Thursday, January 14, 2010

Antonio Margarito To Return Against Carson Jones On Pacquiao-Clottey Card?

by James Slater - Mexico's Antonio Margarito had his year-long suspension installed last January (or thereabouts) and the former champion has now served his time and is expected to return to action this year. According to BoxRec, his always-inevitable return will take place on March 13th, as the 31-year-old will appear on the under-card of the Manny Pacquiao-Joshua Clottey bill (which is all but confirmed a 100-percent as taking place in Dallas on March 13th).

According to the usually reliable, and invaluable, source that is BoxRec, "The Tijuana Tornado" will face 23-year-old light-middleweight Carson Jones of Oklahoma, at welterweight, in a bout scheduled for ten-rounds. And, as much as many fans still have genuine dislike for the man who was allegedly caught attempting to cheat with the aid of illegally-wrapped hands going into his Jan. 24th 2009 fight with "Sugar" Shane Mosley, it cannot be denied how the Mexican's return will attract a ton of publicity.

Indeed, if the talked-of double-date showdown between Pacquiao Vs. Clottey and Mayweather Vs. whoever goes ahead, Margarito's presence on the Dallas show could sway many fans to attend that show instead of the one in Dallas (Bob Arum sure is a shrewd guy!)..

But what do we know about Jones, 24-7-1(15), and what type of fight can we expect if Margarito does indeed face him in a couple of months?

Durable, having been in with a couple of good names, young and as such very likely determined to make his own name, Jones has only been stopped twice in a pro career that began in October of 2004. A fair puncher, Jones, on paper at least, is a bigger guy than Margarito - having fought as high as 167-pounds in the past (Margarito is officially one inch taller than Jones, yet he has boxed at no higher weight than 154-pounds).

Also, unlike the sure-to-be-rusty Margarito, the younger man has also been extremely busy recently; having had no less than nine fights in 2009 (losing only one of them, on points). We don't know what kind of shape the shamed Mexican has kept himself in and we don't know if he can make 147-pounds effectively (the fight could, of course, go ahead at 154 or thereabouts instead). "Toney" will nevertheless be the odds on favourite to win against the man who has been stopped by Luciano Perez (TKO by 6) and Alfonso Gomez (TKO by 8), but at least Jones has been on something of a roll since his last loss, to Jesus Soto Karass back in February of last year.

But never mind how the fight will go; how will the fans react when they first see Margarito in the flesh for the first time since his loss to Mosley? It will be most interesting to see if the former hero gets booed incessantly, maybe even to the extent that the crowd's anger towards him sees to it that the ring gets pelted with foreign objects such as ice and beer cups.

We all knew Margarito - who still insists he was innocent of any wrongdoing last year - would return to the ring one day, and that day now seems to be rapidly approaching. Carson Jones could be on the verge of getting the opportunity of a lifetime, Margarito could be close to getting the opportunity to win back some fans.


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