He is and was one of the classiest boxers I have come across, and I always appreciate that, because I enjoy when good things happen to good people.
Sergio Martinez emerged as a boxing superstar in unlikely fashion, late in the game, after taking up the sport at a most advanced age, 20.
The story of “Maravilla” is a worthy one to brush up on, which you can do in enjoyable fashion by downloading the doc “Maravilla,” which is out on iTunes today.
I screened the film, produced by Lou DiBella at TriBeca last year, and enjoyed the narrative, which laid out how Martinez had to scratch and claw his way up the ladder, and to stay there. He hopped from Argentina, his homeland, to Spain, to the US, to make his mark, and made do with meager purses and off-off-Broadway appearances as he built his resume. And even when his resume was sterling, he had to keep clawing, as when sanctioning body politics muddied his path forward, while he held the WBC middleweight championship.
Here is a description of the film, directed by Juan Pablo Cadaveira:
At 37 years-old, time is not on his side. Sergio Maravilla Martinez embarks on a political and media crusade to reclaim his unjustly stolen WBC World Boxing Championship title. He must fight current champion, Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. , the privileged son of a Mexican boxing legend and godson of the president of the WBC. Chavez Jr. and his powerful promoter, Bob Arum, continually avoid the fight, and the WBC does not strip the title from Chavez Jr. , as regulations mandate. Sergio and his team will have to build a strong fan base to convince Bob Arum to book the fight. In his rise to fame, Sergio will not go down without a fight.
The doc gives superior insight into the life of a certified good dude, and also shines a light on some of the politicking and jostling for position which is such an immense part of the sport. Both my thumbs are up for “Maravilla.”