Who Was the Best Champion in Boxing for the Whole Year?
Proboxing-fans.com’s “Champion of the Year” award is hard laurel to earn. Winning big fights simply isn’t enough to qualify. To even be considered for 2010 Champion of the Year, a boxer must have held onto a major organization title for all 365 days of the past year, a feat which disqualifies almost half the reigning champions straight off the bat. The award is meant to recognize the most meritorious reign of 2010 and reward the achievement of the man who did the most with the gold wrapped around his waist. In 2010, that man was Fernando Montiel.
The Best Champ of 2010
The 5’4″, 31 year old Mexican had enjoyed a superlative reign as WBO Super Flyweight Champion, but until this year there was little to suggest he would blossom as a bantamweight. His 2006 step up in weight resulted in a Split Decision loss. When he finally won a 118 lbs title last year, it was only the interim version and 2009 turned out to be a boring year for Montiel, with only two fights in total and one of those a Technical Draw. So Fernando Montiel should be considered a true dark horse winner of the Champion of the Year award.
He started the year with a 1st Round knockout of undefeated Ciso Morales, confirming his grip on the WBO’s belt. In April came a unification bout with the previous Proboxing-fans.com Champion of the Year, Hozumi Hasegawa. Montiel’s hard-hitting left hook hurt the long-reigning Hasegawa, and the Mexican ably followed up to stop the veteran Japanese warrior. He then defended both belts in July. Fernando Montiel therefore ended the year as the WBC-WBO champion with three title defenses, having taken out an established champ along the way.
Montiel will open 2011 by defending his championship against the talented Nonito Donaire.
Thanks for checking out this installment and be sure to check out the complete list and collection of the ProBoxing-Fans.com 2010 boxing awards!