clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Israel Vazquez cleared to return

Notifight reports that Israel Vazquez, the 122-pound world champion and world's most thrilling fighter (in my opinion, of course), has been medically cleared to return to the ring. Vazquez is aiming for a September return and plans to get back into the gym as soon as possible.

There are several things about this that excite me. First of all, it means my favorite fighter is coming back. But more importantly, it means that he's medically able to come back. The eye procedures he had to have after his trilogy with Rafael Marquez were no joke and could easily have ended his career. Hearing that he'll be back in the ring to thrill us all once again is nothing short of great news for boxing.

Vazquez had recently said he would likely return at 126 pounds, and that seems to be 100% official, which means he'll vacate the 122-pound championship. I'd expect a somewhat easy comeback tune-up like Marquez took this month in Mexico, and then he'll look for a big fight. Neither of them really have it in their blood to make easy paydays against mark opponents.

A September return would mark 18 months out of the ring for Vazquez, and truthfully this return -- like Marquez's -- is no sure bet. I'm hoping for the best, of course, but Vazquez is going to be 32 on Christmas Day this year. That's getting long in the tooth for a guy who has been through the wars against Marquez, Jhonny Gonzalez, Oscar Larios, and others. Marquez returned at 126, too, and both have expressed an interest in a fourth fight. Some fans seem almost squeamish at the very idea of it, but given the lack of depth at 126 it's probably the best payday either of them can get.