By Jake Donovan
Terms have been reached for a vacant 140 lb. interim title fight between Joan Guzman and Vicente Mosquera, Boxinscene.com was informed Sunday afternoon.
The two camps were granted a 30-day negotiation period to avoid going to a purse bid, which would have taken place in mid-March. Instead, both sides worked feverishly to hammer out a deal just over two weeks after initially beginning talks.
“We’re happy with the terms,” said Jose Nunez, Guzman’s manager. “It wasn’t the fight we wanted for our first fight in 2013, but we’re grateful for this opportunity and will do everything to win this and move on to a rematch with Khabib.”
Guzman (33-1-1, 20KO) was dealt his first professional loss last November, suffering a knockdown en route to a technical split decision loss to Khabib Allakhverdiev. A vacant title was at stake, which would have made Guzman a three-division champ. Allakhverdiev was a step ahead most of the way before Guzman’s knee gave out in the eighth round after incidental contact led to his being inadvertently tossed to the canvas.
The scoring was never disputed by the Guzman camp – in fact, most experts believe Allakhverdiev won with plenty of room to spare. Their concern was in the mishandling of events by referee Luis Pabon, which served as the basis of their request for an ordered immediate rematch.
Guzman instead is given first dibs at getting back in line for a rematch.
“We wanted Khabib again, the WBA told us we gotta beat this guy (Mosquera) first,” Nunez said. “We’re good with it. When we beat (Mosquera), we’ll go after Khabib again and bring that belt home.”
Mosquera (32-2-1, 17KO) is currently riding an eight-fight win streak, most of which has taken place in his native Panama. The active stretch has all taken place during his Feb. 2011 ring return following a stay in a Panama prison that contributed to his near-five year separation from the sport.
A brief stay atop the 130 lb. division was met with a savage knockout loss to the late Edwin Valero back in Aug. 2006. His most recent win came in late January, when he was awarded a 6th round disqualification against Francisco Contreras in his native Panama.
Guzman has previously won titles at 122 lb. and 130 lb. but had spent recent years trying to clean up his image rather than focus solely on the sport. The reputation of being lazy and unwilling to make weight has haunted him for years, though he appeared on the right track last year before running into Allakhverdiev.
The bout took place in South Florida, where most of his recent comeback has taken place since signing with Acquinity Sports in early 2012. Miami is one of three destinations targeted for the showdown with Mosquera, with New York City and Dominican Republic also in the mix.
Guzman has not fought since the loss to Allakhverdiev, instead rehabbing injuries suffered during the bout.
Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com, as well as a member of Transnational Boxing Ratings Board, Yahoo Boxing Ratings Panel and the Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox