Concepcion at the Crossroads
Of all the current roster of Filipino pugilists trying to make a name for himself in the boxing world, Bernabe Concepcion seem to be the odd man out. He does not speak Cebuano, he’s managed by Aljoe Jaro and is promoted by Toprank, when almost every other rising Pinoy boxer aside from Manny Pacquaio has been at one time or another affiliated with ALA and is promoted by Golden Boy.
The result, he fights mostly in the states and in Mexico now, defending his NABF and WBC youth Super bantam belts – and would continue to do so until the law of averages catches up with him and snaps his 17 win-streak. Concepcion has not been beaten in three years, and the only blemish in his record was a majority decision loss against a veteran Filipino fighter early in his career, in a fight that could have gone either way.
On April 26, Concepcion will again defend his belt against in Mexico against former US Olympian and Golden-gloves champ Torrence “Dynamite” Daniels, in a fight that on paper would seem like an easy win for Concepcion but in boxing one can never be sure, especially if one fights on hostile territory – in the heart of Mexico of all places. There is also pressure coming from the Philippines as all eyes would be fixed on his performance this weekend. His contemporaries have won their respective bouts in the Philippines last week in impressive fashion and while his fans hope that he continue in his winning ways, a lot of haters (filipinos nonetheless) would love to see him lose in order to advance their own prospects’ interests.
It is no secret that Bob Arum is looking forward to putting him up against one of the current top title-holders next year, and that would mean another two or three years of waiting for other Pinoy prospects in his division. I can only imagine how these people would love nothing more than to see Concepcion lose quite shamefully. I wouldn’t even be surprised if they have an article or post ready as of this minute calling him a “bum” whether he wins or loses.
Bernabe Concepcion is indeed in the crossroads and he can only count on himself to believe that he can do this. His fans are silent, his detractors ready to pounce. The crowd would be against him and the judges cannot be trusted as always. A date with Molitor or even Vazquez looms in the horizon…all he has do is believe in himself, and make believers out of those that STILL don’t.
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