Antonio Margarito retires from boxing
New York, NY, United States (AHN Sports) – Though he was considered one of the best welterweight fighters in the world, having held championship belts at multiple points during his career, Antonio Margarito decided to conclude a controversial boxing career.
Margarito, nicknamed El Tornado de Tijuana because for his aggressive fighting style, announced his retirement Thursday.
“After twenty-two years of full dedication to the profession I love, I have decided to announce my retirement from boxing,” the 34-year-old Mexican-American boxer said on his Facebook page. “After thinking broadly and in detail with my family and my team, we have come to the conclusion that it’s time to hang my gloves and start a new chapter in my life. I’m leave boxing but I will continue within the sport.”
Margarito’s last fought last December, a rematch with Miguel Cotto, whom he had beaten via technical knockout in the 11th round in July 2008 before fighting Shane Mosley in a January 2009 bout that forever stained his past victories.
He was battered and outclassed by the former champion and heavy underdog Mosley, losing the fight and his WBA crown by 9th round TKO, but Margarito was also suspended for 16 months after illegal plaster inserts from his hand wraps were discovered prior to his clash with Mosley.
That hand-wrap scandal in 2009 not only raised the legitimacy of his victories, but it stigmatized Margarito, who was once feared for his relentless pressure style of fighting.
Margarito was eventually banned from fighting in California, but was allowed to fight Texas.
Despite having a 17 pound weight advantage, a 4.5 inch height advantage and a six-inch reach advantage, Margarito took a savage, brutal beating from a much shorter Manny Pacquiao in their November 2010 clash at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
Margarito lost that fight when the referee stopped the bout before the 10th round because of swelling around the eye. He had to be taken directly to hospital afterwards.
After getting pummelled by Pacquiao, it was discovered that Margarito’s right orbital bone had been fractured, a condition that required multiple eye surgeries prior to his rematch with Cotto.
That same eye that was badly damaged in his fight with Pacquiao, was swelled shut in his second meeting with Cotto. It factored in the decision to stop the grudge match, with Cotto winning via TKO by doctor stoppage in the 10th round.
It proved to be sweet revenge for Cotto, who believed Margarito had handed him his first defeat with the help of loaded gloves.
His decision to call it quits was widely believed that his body was breaking down as he struggles with injuries, which include his Achilles and eye problem.
Margarito’s Achilles injury forced him to withdraw from a Top Rank card last May 26, in a middleweight battle with Abel Perry.
A victory would have set him for a possible big-money fight against middleweight titlist Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. in the fall.
Margarito, who made his professional debut at the age of 15 at welterweight, beating Jose Trujillo in Tijuana by decision, captured three welterweight world titles.
Margarito finished his career with a 38-8 record and 27 knockouts.