By: Hans Themistode
More and more retired fighters are wiping off the dust that collected on their boxing gloves and entering the ring. Joining 54-year-old Mike Tyson, 48-year-old Oscar De La Hoya, 58-year-old Julio Cesar Chavez and a long list of others will be 47-year-old Marco Antonio Barrera and 44-year-old Erik Morales.
The two are slated to face off on July 16th in the United States. Their showdown will be a six-round exhibition with the rules not yet revealed. The two famously fought three times over the course of their careers with Barrera winning two out of the three. Although their last contest against one another took place nearly two decades ago in 2004, Morales believes that with their long history against one another, they can recreate magic.
“We are very happy to be able to get back in the ring,” said Morales to ESPN Deportes. “Barrera was a great opponent for me in my career, we had three fights, two of them were the best [fights] of the year.”
Recently, older fighters have gotten the itch to return to the ring. With Tyson seemingly on a collision course with Evander Holyfield later on this year and with De La Hoya ending his near decade and a half long retirement on July 3rd, boxing’s all-time greats continue to release their hands from the grip of Father Time to relive some of their glorious moments in the ring.
Both Morales and Barrera retired roughly four months apart. For Morales, he ended his career on a whimper as he lost three of his four contests including back-to-back defeats at the hands of Danny Garcia. The latter concluded in the fourth round via vicious knockout in 2012. Barrera on the other hand, wrapped up his career four months earlier on a high note, winning back-to-back contests including a second-round stoppage win against journeymen Jose Arias.
While their date is officially set, other small details are currently being worked out, including what safety measures will be in place to ensure that both all-timers will leave the ring unscathed.
“We are just finalizing some things. In a few days, we will have the venue and see if we are going to use headgear or not. What has been decided is that it will be six rounds.”
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