When Vic Darchinyan entered his flyweight title defense against Nonito Donaire in July 2007, Darchinyan was expected to defend his belt against a lesser-known Donaire. But Donaire caught Darchinyan with a left hook to the head in the fifth round, stopping Darchinyan via TKO.
Darchinyan has waited six years to get a rematch, and it will happen Saturday when they square off at American Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texas on the undercard of the Rocky Martinez-Mikey Garcia super featherweight title fight.
No belts are on the line for Darchinyan-Donaire, but Darchinyan probably couldn’t care less. He is going to get his shot at redemption, and he says he won’t make the same blunders he made last time. He noted that when he was decked by Donaire, he tried to get up too quickly. When he did get to his feet, he stumbled across the ring, prompting the referee to stop the fight.
“In 2007 there was the punch,” Darchinyan recalled this week. “I jumped (in) and Nonito got me with the left hook. It was the only knockdown of my life – amateur or professional. Never been knocked down. I jumped up right away. If I take a couple of seconds on the floor to recover, maybe it would have been a different outcome, you know? I had no experience with a knockdown. Now it is good – I have experience with it.
“I want to say to everyone I have been waiting six years. It was my mistake and I have good skills and I have power and I will not make the same mistake again.”
Darchinyan, 37, is 39-5-1 with 28 knockouts. Donaire, 30, is 31-2 with 30 knockouts.