Xavier Martinez’s first fight with Top Rank didn’t go as expected as Robson Conceicão came away with the unanimous decision victory.
The old saying is, “fatigue makes a coward of us all.” On Saturday, Jan. 29, super featherweight boxer Robson Conceicão knew how to react to those famous words by being in such good shape that fatigue wasn’t possible.
Conceicão’s opponent was the undefeated 24-year-old Xavier Martinez, who fought in his first contest under the Top Rank banner. They met at the Hard Rock Casino in Tulsa, OK, but it was the older Conceicão who walked away with the victory.
Conceicão (17-1, 8 KOs) dropped his previous bout against WBC super featherweight champion Oscar Valdez. Martinez (17-1, 11 KOs) told FanSided before the fight that he thought Valdez made Conceicão look better than he was in their matchup due to being preoccupied with a positive PED result.
It turns out that Conceicão is as good as advertised.
Even though Conceicão didn’t get the win against Valdez, he demonstrated that he’s an elite fighter. Despite being nine years older than Martinez, Conceicão was busier. His Olympic gold medal pedigree also helped.
Robson Conceicão bested the younger Xavier Martinez to cruise to a unanimous decision to win the WBC super featherweight eliminator
From the opening bell to the end of round 10, Conceicão took the fight to Martinez and vastly outworked the boxer from Sacramento, CA. The Brazilian let his hands go, moved well around the ring, and bullied Martinez to the ropes when he wanted. Martinez had no answers for Conceicão.
Martinez’s best round came in round 3. He was losing the majority of the round, but a right hand and then a left hook to Conceicão’s temple momentarily changed the fight’s momentum. Martinez’s left hand rocked Conceicão, whose legs went wobbly. Fortunately for him, the bell rang soon after.
Martinez failed to apply pressure, and Conceicão’s head cleared between rounds as he picked up where he left off. Round after round, Conceicão beat Martinez to the punch and piled up the points using his superior hand speed. He didn’t allow Martinez to find his rhythm as he eluded Martinez’s shots.
Between rounds 6 and 7, Martinez looked dejected in his corner. At the end of round 9, Conceicão’s quick jab showed on Martinez’s face as he dripped blood from a cut under his right eye. After the final bell, it was clear that Conceicão won the fight by a landslide. The judges agreed as they unanimously awarded the fight to Conceicão by wide margins.
Martinez couldn’t match Conceicão’s pace, and he never tried to, which is the problem. He was too gun shy, and Conceicão’s stamina was too daunting.
Conceicão vs. Martinez was a WBC title eliminator, so Conceicão might get another crack at Valdez. He gave Valdez trouble in September. The version of Conceicão that dominated Martinez could beat Valdez. Valdez is rumored to be in talks for a fight with Shakur Stevenson. Conceicão could meet the winner.