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Guillermo Rigondeaux: 'I am a champion for a reason, I'm not going to change'

Guillermo Rigondeaux has been a hot topic for his inactivity since beating Nonito Donaire, but says he won't change his style of fighting to please any TV executives.

Al Bello
Scott Christ is the managing editor of Bad Left Hook and has been covering boxing for SB Nation since 2006.

Since cleanly and clearly beating Nonito Donaire in April, Guillermo Rigondeaux has been the subject of a lot of discussion, mostly centered around HBO's disinterest in airing his fights due to, promoter Bob Arum says, a boring in-ring style that doesn't make him interesting to the casual fan.

But Rigondeaux feels his style is why he's been so successful, beating a top pound-for-pound contender in just his 12th pro fight, and says he's not going to change to please anyone else.

"I don't think I need to change anything. I am a champion. I am a champion for a reason. I am not going to change. I am just going to keep doing what I am doing and that has been working for me," Rigondeaux told BoxingScene Radio.

Personally, I've found this entire saga ridiculous. There are plenty of fighters who aren't exactly exciting that HBO is eager to push, including Andre Ward and Terence Crawford. The difference may be as simple as the fact that they're American fighters who can do English interviews, while the Cuban Rigondeaux is always facing an uphill battle to become a real draw as a fighter.

Still, and I've said this before, I fail to see any big difference between Rigondeaux and Yuriorkis Gamboa. Rigondeaux has also torched lesser competition, just like Gamboa, and while he doesn't have the perceived exciting style of Gamboa, part of that is just that he's a better fighter. Gamboa has lightning speed and can be plenty of fun, but his last fight sure wasn't very good, and Rigondeaux's win over Donaire is much more than Gamboa has done over a longer, constantly-televised pro career.

And that's not meant to be a shot at Gamboa, either. He should be televised. So should Rigondeaux. Especially considering HBO demanded Donaire-Rigondeaux. They apparently just didn't get the "right" winner to come out of the fight. But I've said all of this before, of course, and so have many other people (well, not the Gamboa comparison -- I seem to be alone on that one).

My point is, good for Rigondeaux. That's all I'm saying. Good for him. He's got, like, a righteous battle to fight here. Or maybe you don't care and you find him boring. That's fine, too. That's your prerogative, man.

Rigondeaux (12-0, 8 KO) says he plans to return in November, which would jibe with what I've heard, that he'll be back on the Pacquiao-Rios PPV card from Macao.

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