Premier bantamweights Fernando Montiel and Nonito Donaire have disavowed any claims to a technical fight on February 19, promising their much-anticipated showdown to be an all-out war.
The two fighters greeted media today at the Los Angeles leg of their press tour. Donaire, who’s last outing was an aggressive, stunning fourth KO of Volodymyr Sydorenko, claimed that he and Montiel have made a solemn vow to go for a KO win. Citing their even skills on paper, Donaire views this fight as a guarantee Fight of the Year candidate.
“We have a resolution together in terms of winning this fight. We don’t want to win this fight by decision,” Donaire explained. “Everyone knows we both have power and tremendous left hooks. I have tremendous speed, but he as a tremendous body shot. This is a good boxer-puncher matchup…the ingredients for this is A+.”
Hoping to compete with Showtime’s bantamweight tournament, Donaire and Montiel’s matchup will be the first time in recent memory that HBO showcases the 118 pound division. While Donaire acknowledges there is an intense rivalry with Montiel, he states trash-talking won’t be necessary to sell this contest.
“It’s going to be fireworks. Not only that, the undercard is great as well,” Donaire stated. “That night is going to be fighters who are willing to take their lives and give it all, no matter the outcome…With Mexican and Filipino fighters there’s not a lot of crap talked about each other. It’s about respect.
Fernando Montiel fought four times in 2010, knocking out each opponent he faced. He expects to take heavy punishment against Donaire, and hints it’ll take at least two fights to settle matters between them.
“It’s definitely going to be a war…I’ve never fought a fighter as complete as Nonito,” Montiel conceded. “I would like this fight to exceed expectations and be a war: I drop him, he drops me, I cut him, he cuts me. If it ends being two or three fights with him, I don’t mind. I’m willing to do any and everything.”
Despite all the talk of war from each fighter, Montiel acknowledged the technical prowess between them, citing Leonard-Hearns-I as a possible blueprint to their championship showdown.
“I see this fight like Sugar Ray Leonard and Tommy Hearns because of the height of Nonito,” he stated. ”But he has speed, and I have speed. ..It’s going to be a sensational fight.”
Donaire is challenging for Montiel’s WBC and WBO bantamweight titles. Tickets are on sale now at Las Vegas’s Mandalay Bay, ranging from $25-$250.
Donaire-Montiel will air live February 19 on HBO’s Boxing After Dark. Start time is 9:45 PM EST.