In what could be the biggest fight of his career Nonito Donaire will take on Nicholas Walters on October 18th at the StubHub Center in Carson, CA. Donaire will attempt to reclaim his spot at the top of division. Leading into this fight, many writers and observers simply feel that Donaire doesn’t have it anymore.
On the other hand, Donaire has returned to the Bay Area and started a training camp earlier than usual as he began his work in the gym starting in early August. It feels as though Donaire hears the critics and wants to respond with a vintage performance, one like his performance against Vic Darchinyan, the first go around, in which Donaire flatlined the fighter with a check hook.
The thing is Walters has a history with Darchinyan too. Walters essentially retired Darchinyan earlier this year on the undercard of a Donaire headlined card. Now Walters a heavy handed featherweight is looking to garner the major attention his skill set has endowed him and Walters feels is justly due, as challenges Donaire for his WBA featherweight title. Walters poses a new threat to Donaire, not in size and power, but in hunger, Walters wants recognition and he wants it bad.
As I sat in a gym earlier this month watching Donaire run on the curve machine using a special mask to restrict oxygen, the mood was set in the gym, though Donaire is still the same friendly Donaire that everyone has grown to love, this fight is one he is not toying around with. Donaire is like a machine now a days seen at certain gyms in the morning and then at others at the night. His camp has yet to be official announced, but it appears that Donaire has reached a point in his life where he is finding balance between starting a family and dividing training duties in an adequate manner.
All of this being said, Walters is really good. Donaire who at times falls in love with power shots has to move away from that thought process as Walters throws viscous combinations with ill intent. Walters is a bit wild, but his power has bailed him out as he is just not the type of person you want to look for an opening against in fear of getting hit with one of his heavy handed shots.
So in a classic speed versus power matchup another equation enters the realm as well, age versus youth. Donaire vs. Walters will serve as the co feature on the Gennady Golovkin vs. Marco Antonio Rubio card. This event has the makings of an all out action packed evening.