When we talk about really great fights what we love is the complete package. High quality boxing, drama, excitement, and momentum swings. Whilst we don't really mind too much on the profile of the bout we do love to see bouts that swing one way and then the other. Today we bring you one such bout, that featured a knockdown early, a point deduction, a fight back and saw a brawl take the fight to a boxer. Better yet this bout really does come from deep inside out vault, with this Closet Classic taking place way back in 1972 and features a legitimate legend.
Masao Oba (32-2-1, 13) vs Orlando Amores (27-1, 18)
Japan's Masao Ohba, the Eternal Champion, is regarded as one of Japan's all time greats despite passing away at just 23. He's arguably the greatest unfulfilled talent in boxing history, and despite passing away so young had a career that many fighters would have wished they could have matched. In just 38 career bouts he would beat the likes of Bernabe Villacampo, Berkrerk Chartvanchai, Betulio Gonzalez, Susumu Hanagata and Chartchai Chionoi. In the ring he was a pure joy to watch, a fantastic technical boxer who moved well and judges distance fantastically. Here he was just 22 years old, here he was seeking his 4th defense of the title just 20 months after winning it. As well as the 4 defenses he had also fit in 3 non-title bouts, including a win over Fritz Chervet.
Panama's Orlando Amores is sadly not a well remembered fighter, which is a shame as he was a very fan friendly and aggressive fighter who should be more fondly remembered than he is. Sadly though he came around in an era where Panama had a few icons with fighters like Roberto Duran, Ernesto Marcel and Ismael Laguna as well world champions like Jaime Rios and Enrique Pinder. Coming in to this bout the then 24 year old had only suffered a single loss, coming way back in 1968 against Luis Carlos Urrunaga. He had bounced back with 18 straight wins, 12 of which had come by T/KO and included wins over future Bantamweight champion Enrique Pinder, future world title challenger Nestor Jimenez, future Minimumweight champion Luis Estaba and a win in a rematch with Urrunaga.
From the opening moments it was clear that both men were there to win, and to do so impressively, with Oba looking to set the pace. He paid for that when Amores began to press forward and caught Oba with a huge left hook on the jaw. It send Oba down, though he got to his feet quickly. That spurred on Amores who pressed hard, and tried to take Oba out with calculated pressure and huge, booming right hands. In round 2 Oba managed to get behind his razor jab and force Amores backward at times, but the man from Panama continues to look for, and land big shots, though it was he that took a big one, and was dropped in the second round.
With both men knowing they could put the other down there was a sense of danger and that added to the drama and excitement as the bout went on. This was a bout with everything, and deserves a series amount of attention, even now, almost 50 years on!
When we have some free time we're hoping to add a series of fun articles to the site. Hopefully these will be enjoyable little short features