On Saturday, May 7, WBC lightweight champion Jose Luis Castillo faces WBO champion Diego Corrales in a world title unification bout from the Mandalay Bay in a fight broadcast on Showtime. Here are the predictions of The Sweet Science writers.
Castillo by decision.
I feel that Jose Luis Castillo has hit the prime of his career. He reminds me a lot of the great Julio Cesar Chavez when he ruled the lightweights. Chavez was a little better boxer and a harder hitter then Castillo. but Jose has the same relentless drive and tenacity that Chavez possessed, as well as a the granite chin. Castillo will need all these attributes when he faces the murderous punching Diego Corrales. Diego is tall, rangy and knows how to use his height and reach. Castillo will have to absorb some punches to get inside. His chin will be severely tested. I have been excited about this bout since the day it was signed. It has the makings of a classic. My guess is that the chin will win. I'm going with Castillo by KO in ten.
This is a real good fight. Both Jose Luis Castillo and Diego Corrales are somewhat underrated. They've faced top opposition for years, so that they are meeting each other is only natural. I think it's a close fight, but Corrales will be busier and win a close decision.
Robert Cassidy Jr.
How long it lasts depends on which Castillo shows up. Castillo looked like the “El Temible” of old against Julio Diaz, but “The Kidd” fought with “mucho temor,” as he seemed more intent on not getting hurt than he did wanting to hurt Castillo. Three months prior, JLC had to depend on second half magic and a bit of generous scoring in prevailing over Joel Casamayor. In fact, this will be his fourth big fight in eleven months. Corrales has been idle for the past nine months, but I believe that it will have served more as a rest than it will provide rust. Chico is a much sharper puncher and better boxer since joining forces with Joe Goossen. I like Chico to box early, brawl when necessary, and slice up Castillo enough to eventually stop him on cuts. Corrales TKO10.
Diego Corrales continues to box clever and proves too tall an order for Jose Luis Castillo. Corrales wins a close decision in an entertaining bout.
Chico's questionable chin always leaves the possibility of a knockout loss, but his fists will be too powerful for Castillo. Diego Corrales TKO 9.
At 31 Jose Luis Castillo is already a 15-year veteran of the ring. He’s tough and can hit. Corrales, a proven puncher, has had good success since leaving prison – except, of course for his slugfest stoppage loss to Joel Casamayor, later avenged. Both fighters have come up short against Floyd Mayweather, but he won’t be in the ring on this night. Look for Corrales to edge out Castillo in power and control the fight. Corrales by decision.
Blood and guts all the way: Diego “Chico” Corrales.
While most agree that this fight may not go till the end, I see Castillo using his superior skills to out-box the very dangerous and resurgent Corrales to win a hard-fought decision. If it does turn into an all-out slugfest, Castillo will get his victory a little sooner – via TKO. Jose Luis Castillo over Diego Corrales via decision or mid-round TKO.
A pair of lightweights with some thunder in their gloves. Should be entertaining. Castillo seems to be getting better with age. He hasn't lost since his 2002 setback to Floyd Mayweather Jr. and he probably didn't lose that one either. Corrales' TKO over the tiring Acelino Freitas was impressive, but Castillo wins by decision.
Both men are traditionally slow starters and Castillo has looked even slower of late, meaning Corrales could steal a few early rounds. For Diego to be up three rounds to one after the fourth would be no surprise. Both men have freakish power and Castillo does take a punch better. He has, however, been stopped several times in his career due to cuts. I think Corrales may be more comfortable with making weight and stays strong late in the fight to fend of a Castillo charge. Diego has big power and should earn Castillo's respect. Chico likely the better boxer now that he has found out how to use a jab and work behind it to set up the rest of his attack. With Castillo a constant stalker, I think the style is perfect for Corrales, who catches Castillo coming in all night long. All-around Diego is the better fighter and I expect him to maintain the early lead and take a decision. Either man may hit the canvas and Castillo could get cut up. Corrales by late TKO in an epic fight that surpasses the hype.
On paper, Corrales should be the winner. But this is one of those instances where my gut tells me that Castillo is going to give Chico all he can handle. Castillo is rough, tough and can take a punch. If Corrales can't hurt him, I can see him getting frustrated and confused and Castillo start to dominate. Castillo TKO 11.
Castillo, who was able to give Floyd Mayweather hell, is a bit too well-rounded and experienced for Corrales. Castillo by decision or late TKO.
After an easy week, they throw Jose Luis Castillo-Diego Corrales at us, a fight that is about as easy to pick as is naming which reality soap opera will dominate the cable news channels next week. I think the joker is trying to figure out how Castillo will handle having to go back to training camp with only 10 days rest after three hard fights in 10 months. On the plus side, Castillo has been known to starve himself making weight, which should not happen after a schedule like that. On the minus side, the last time I picked a Castillo to win, Eliseo sent his sister Emily to take his place when he “fought” Wladimir Klitschko a few weeks back. I checked; Jose Luis does not have a sister (at least, none that I found). J.L. Castillo by decision.
The single punch that can turn it around; that's what we have here. Castillo is tough as a cob — relentless — always in great shape — throws a million punches — with some real pop. Sure, he can be tricked and outmaneuvered — we've all seen that against Mayweather — but he's a dog with a bone when he gets close. He'll be able to do that with Corrales. Can he hurt him? Knock'm out? Sure…but he'll have to be close enough to do it. He hasn't got Mayweather's legs or speed. In one of those exchanges, Chico will land that left hook and the fight will be over. He hits that hard.
Castillo vs. Corrales will be what Margarito vs. Cintron wasn't. I don't think either guy will win in a one-sided blowout. At first glance this looks like a classic puncher's war. As a percentage of wins, both men have 82% knockout ratios. I think Corrales will try to use his jab to dictate the tempo of the fight, and work combinations to Castillo's body to set the foundation for the later rounds. Castillo will try to slip and work his way inside. Castillo is a superb infighter, and his physical strength will prove to be problematic for Chico. In the end, Castillo has been the more active fighter, and has the better chin. I think he'll survive some tough moments in a great fight to win a close decision.
This is a difficult one to pick. On paper, the advantage goes to Diego Corrales because of his size advantage and the fact that Jose Luis Castillo is a little older. Castillo is a slow starter as well, which will give Chico time to scrape off nine months of ring rust. However, this is a fight that will come down to one attribute: the chin – and Castillo’s is much more durable. The fight will go the distance and be very close, but Corrales will make a trip or two to the canvas. This will be just enough for El Temible to win. Castillo by split decision.