Rumors continue to come in about a ring return for Erik Morales, and today BoxingScene.com says that Jose Alfaro is the new target opponent. The fight would be in March.
Morales turned 33 in September, so age on the surface is not a major issue. But there are some serious problems with any possible Morales return, said to be coming at lightweight, with some talk of him even fighting at 140 pounds
- Morales has not won a fight since he beat Manny Pacquiao on March 19, 2005. That was almost five years ago. Five years.
- In his final fight against David Diaz in August 2007, Morales reported "buzzing" in his head when he was punched. Bob Arum refused to have anything to do with any future Morales fights when "El Terrible" told him that.
- He's a very old 33. He's had a LOT of very savage, very physical fights. Morales has taken a ton of punishment in his career.
- He's not a lightweight, and he's certainly not a junior welterweight. But he can't make weights below 135 anymore. Simply put, Morales won't be competitive.
- Think about it this way. The guy that started his current losing streak (Zahir Raheem) hasn't fought in a year and a half.
I don't know if he needs the money or what, or if it's just a fighter's desire to get back out there and win some fights. He's lost four in a row. There are folks saying Ricky Hatton is a shot fighter, but I think that's something yet to be proven. I have no doubts that Morales is a shot fighter, and I also have no doubt that Morales will bravely/stupidly go out on his shield in any fight he's going to lose. He's a pure warrior, one of the best blood-and-guts fighters of his generation, and an all-time great fighter in the 122-pound division. He also had a lot of success at 126 and 130.
But he hit the wall. There is no more to prove, and there's really no good ending. He's been out of the ring for over two years now and I've yet to see anyone say it's a good idea at all for him to get back into boxing.
I'm a huge Erik Morales fan, so that might play into it. But I don't want to see anyone get hurt. I've never been a big fan of, say, Joan Guzman, but if he were in a similar position I'd hope he didn't fight anymore either. The only thing Morales is going to get in a ring return is hurt.
And I really don't think he can even beat Jose Alfaro (23-5, 20 KO). With Alfaro's KO rate, I think the obvious ending is Morales stopped inside the distance for the third time in his storied career. On paper, that fight looks a lot like the 2008 summer bout between Sebastian Lujan and a faded, overweight Jose Luis Castillo.