Nonito Donaire (31-2, 20 KO’s)who recently became a father, last fought on April 13th of this year in a lackluster performance against Cuban technician Guillermo Rigondeaux. Rigondeaux put up a hell of a performance without throwing hardly any punches and Donaire seemed amateurish.
Fans began contemplating what would be the next step for Donaire. Would he get a rematch with Rigondeaux? Would he move up in weight? Would he continue at 122 pounds?
A bout with hard hitting Armenian Vic Darchinyan (39-5-1, 28KO’s) has been in the works and Darchinyan has waited for a rematch ever since their first fight took place a long time ago. Should a fight between the two take place, fans are more likely to see a repeat seeing as Darchinyan has declined since their they last faced each other. Fans aren’t exactly jumping out of their seats for this fight either.
Instead, Donaire should move up to 126 or 130 pounds. There is plenty of competition in the two divisions which would provide for entertaining matches who are with Top Rank or in a working relationship with Top Rank. Potential matchups with Mikey Garcia (maybe not as the share the same trainer) Chris John, Orlando Salido,Billy Dib, Roman Martinez, Juan Carlos Burgos, and Diego Magdaleno would all be good matchups. Don’t forget about a potential matchup with Yuriorkis Gamboa who said he would move back down in weight for a high profile fight.
Donaire has proven himself at 122 pounds and there is no shame in losing to Rigondeaux. Fans will not get to see other matchups that they really want due to the Top Rank-Golden Boy war as well as rivaling networks but there are still big fights to be made for the Bay Area based Filipino, but staying at 122 pounds will just hold him back.