Marquez moves up in weight class

first_imgRafael Marquez has doled out a lot of pain over his terrific career, having knocked out 32 opponents while compiling a record of 36-3. He is 8-0 in world title fights. But the damage has been done in the bantamweight division. Marquez will move up in weight tonight to challenge Israel Vazquez for his World Boxing Council super bantamweight belt at Home Depot Center in Carson. When the opening bell rings, an all-out assault by the Mexican fighters is expected. So it won’t take long to ascertain whether Marquez brought his tremendous punching power up a weight class. “The four-pound difference does not do anything to me,” Marquez, 31, of Mexico City. “I feel stronger, actually. I wanted to move up a long time ago. I do not feel any disadvantages moving up to 122. “I am strong and I am a great fighter. So why should I feel that way?” Marquez won the International Boxing Federation bantamweight championship with an eighth-round technical knockout of Tim Austin in February 2003. He made seven successful defenses, five by knockout. Now, he not only is moving up to super bantamweight, he is taking on the best fighter in the world in that division. Thus, all the questions about how he will fare at the higher weight. It seems to have been a theme at news conferences and conference calls promoting the fight. “It was my decision to move to 122, so I will be well prepared,” Marquez said. He had better be because Vazquez is coming to rumble. center_img “He is going to have to deal with fighting me,” said Vazquez, who is 41-3 with 30 knockouts. “I am a natural 122-pounder. He has never had to do that before. So I think that will be the biggest obstacle or problem facing him.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more