By Johnny Walker
Tonight on Showtime Boxing from Indio, California, the American heavyweight scene became a little clearer when Chris “The Nightmare” Arreola destroyed hype job Seth Mitchell and likely sent him into the netherworld of boxing failures.
Many pundits, including this one, were picking a first round Arreola win, as the Californian came into the ring at a trim 242 pounds and ready to go. With Mitchell’s reputation for being unable to handle high pressure, it was unlikely that the soft-chinned former football player could handle what a real boxer like Arreola was going to quickly dish out. And he couldn’t.
As soon as Arreola went to work seriously, Mitchell was wobbling from the fistic combinations that included some big right hands. Arreola threw Mitchell off when he was trying to hang on for dear life, and it wasn’t counted a knockdown. But more pressure and punches in bunches from Arreola led to a legit knockdown, and finally, with Mitchell hiding behind referee Jack Reiss, the fight was called off.
Arreola, now 36-3, with 31 KOs, now hopes for a rematch with Bermane Stiverne, who he lost to in April after barely training for the fight. This time, Arreola was held a virtual prisoner in Phoenix by trainer Henry Ramirez for six weeks and the results speak for themselves.
Arreola figures WBC hreavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko is almost done, so a rematch between him and Stiverne would be for some version of the title. As for Seth Mitchell, he really should seriously consider coaching college football. He’ll never be a boxing champion.
In an earlier enounter, 38-year-old former multi-division champion Rafael Marquez (41-9, 37 KOs) failed to impress as underdog Efrain Esquivias (17-2-1, 10 KOs) blasted him out in the ninth round. Marquez, known for his wars with Israel Vasquez, is another fighter who seriously needs to consider retirement from the sport.