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50 years ago

Roberto Duran vs Esteban De Jesus II

Roberto Duran vs  Esteban De Jesus 2

Date: 16th March 1974

Venue: Gimnasio Nuevo Panama, Panama City

Title: WBA World Lightweight Title

Promoter: Incude


Roberto Duran
( 41 - 1 - 0 )
Weight: 134 lbs

Esteban De Jesus
( 41 - 1 - 0 )
Weight: 134ΒΌ lbs

Roberto Duran defended his WBA World Lightweight Title for the fourth time against Esteban De Jesus at the Gimnasio Nuevo Panama in Panama City on Saturday 16th March 1974. With both boxers having a record of 41-1-0 going into the fight, it was expected to be a close and thrilling contest. Duran, a Panama City native, was the 2-to-1 favorite, but De Jesus, from Carolina, Puerto Rico, had previously beaten Duran in their first meeting at Madison Square Garden in 1972.

The fight started explosively with De Jesus dropping Duran with a left hook just 90 seconds into the first round, just as he had done in their previous encounter. The third round saw the two boxers exchanging punches at an incredible pace, but by the middle rounds, Duran was taking control. He was not only applying relentless pressure but also taking advantage of the sweltering Panamanian heat, which was over 90 degrees.

In the seventh round, Duran landed a five-punch combination that included a hook to the body and a right to the temple, causing DeJesus to sink to the floor. In the eighth round, Duran continued to dominate, landing a punishing up-and-down combination that nearly floored DeJesus. By this point, Duran was landing a high percentage of his power punches, and the challenger was visibly feeling the effects.

DeJesus tried to keep his distance early in the 11th round, but Duran closed the gap and unleashed a five-punch volley that included a hook to the body and a final right to the head. This sent DeJesus to the canvas for the second time in the fight, and he was unable to rise before the referee's count of 10. Despite his fighter's heart, DeJesus had reached his limit, and Duran emerged victorious by KO at 1:11 in round 11.

This was an impressive win for Duran, who had avenged his only defeat and cemented his place as one of the best lightweight boxers of all time.

Roberto Duran vs Esteban De Jesus 2 on YouTube

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