ﾎﾞｸｼﾝｸﾞ ﾌｪｻﾞｰ10回戦 長谷川穂積×ﾌｪﾘｯｸｽ(再起戦)01 (via ohmyphuket)Part 2
Former bantam and featherweight titleholder Hozumi Hasegawa returned to the ring on the undercard of Friday’s world title doubleheader, two days shy of the one-year anniversary of his loss to Jhonny Gonzalez. The southpaw showed shades of his old form, battering Felipe Carlos Felix over seven frames. Though the previously undefeated Mexican is hardly on the level of Gonzalez or any of Hasegawa’s more recent opponents, the performance was a solid one that allowed the former champ to show he still has something in the tank.
The comeback fight was supposed to occur last year, but a rib injury postponed Hasegawa’s return. He seems to still have his hand speed – displaying good quickness in his jab and throwing several hard left hands from different angles in a moment’s time. His lead blow appears to have improved under the instruction of former world champion Frankie Liles, throwing the right jab not only with speed, but with more conviction as well. Hasegawa continues to spread his attack to both the body and the head, catching Felix unexpectedly a few times with the straight left to the body.
But while the speed is there, one must assess that he will not be as powerful as he was at 118. Though Hasegawa was never really a one-punch knockout artist, he was unable to knockdown Felix until the very end, despite landing flush bombs with the left.
In addition, assuming Hasegawa will have to be more tactical at the heavier weight, he will have to tighten his defense. As his fights with Montiel and Gonzalez have proved, the former champ’s chin is not one of steel. In Hasegawa’s fervor to finish off the Mexican, Felix actually landed a few counter punches that froze the lefty for an instant. The southpaw, or his head, to be more specific, also seems to be in the same position whenever he moves into a defensive posture.
The TV commentators noted that Hasegawa would like a rematch with Gonzalez. While his win over Felix is a positive step toward bigger fights, taking another test before facing an elite fighter might be a better choice. If he does insist on another shot at a title, negotiating with the WBA’s Chris John is perhaps the more prudent option.