March 3, 2016
March 3, 2016
Felix Trinidad

Aciton Images/Reuters/Steve Marcus

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  1. SOMEBODY’S 0 had to go on this day in 2000, as Felix ‘Tito’ Trinidad squared-off with David Reid, for the latter’s WBA World super-welterweight strap.
  1. THE fight marked Tito’s first at 153lbs, after a hugely successful campaign at 147, where he had reigned as IBF king since 1993, and had later added the WBO crown to his collection in 1999, after gaining a majority decision over then unbeaten Oscar De La Hoya.
  1. IT was a slow start to the title contest, with neither man impressing the 10,100 capacity-crowd that had packed in to Caesar’s Palace. But pandemonium ensued in the third, when the former Olympic gold medallist dropped Tito – a straight-right, causing the Puerto Rican to take a knee.
  1. UP at 3, Trinidad rubbed his nose and jogged to a neutral corner to hear the rest of the count. Oddly, it wasn’t the American who applied the pressure in the moments that followed, but the gutsy Puerto Rican – proving how much of a dangerous operator he could be when wounded.
  1. AFTER five rounds, Reid led on all scorecards, prompting Tito to up the ante. He began to batter the champion’s torso with vicious hooks, the wild nature of the shots causing a handful to land low. And having already received instruction to keep it above the belt in the second stanza, Tito had a point deducted in the sixth.
  1. AS the second half of the fight got underway, Reid began to lose control. Instead of sticking to his game-plan of utilising his speed, movement and skill, he reverted to searching for the straight-right that had put Trinidad down. Sensing a momentum shift, Tito moved in tight, landed a left-right and followed it up with a left hook to the jaw, stunning the champion, and sending him crashing to the canvas for a count.
  1. TRINIDAD dominated the eighth, landing hurtful blows and administering additional damage to Reid’s already swollen right eye. Referee Mitch Halpern called a time out to inspect the injury before deeming it suitable to continue.
  1. BEING in the best shape of his career allowed Tito to suffocate his opponent’s space throughout the ninth and tenth rounds. Without a slight air of caution, he ripped two left hooks into the side of the American, who approvingly responded with a nod.
  1. A right upper-cut put Reid down in the eleventh, he rose at the count of two [assured that he could walk it off] but the Puerto Rican swarmed him, a flurry of punches finding their desired mark sent the champion to the canvas for the second time in the round. Pre-empting victory, Trinidad scaled the turnbuckle, punching his chest in approval of the crowd’s cheers. The heart of Reid could not be denied however, as he rose to fight on.
  1. AFTER visiting the mat for a third time in the eleventh, and being hit with everything, David Reid welcomed the sound of the bell at the end of the twelfth. He had survived a late onslaught, to hear what the judges at ringside made of the contest. With tallies of 114-106 and 114-107 twice, Felix Trinidad was announced the winner by unanimous decision.