Salvador Sánchez

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Salvador Sánchez
S. Sanchez.jpg
Statistics
Real name Salvador Sánchez Narváez
Nickname(s) Sal Sánchez
The Invincible Eagle
The Champ
Chava
Weight(s) Featherweight
Height 1.68 m (5 ft 6 in)
Reach 173 cm (68 in)
Nationality Mexican
Born January 26, 1959
Santiago Tianguistenco, EdoMex, Mexico
Died August 12, 1982(1982-08-12) (aged 23) Queretaro, Mexico
Stance Orthodox
Boxing record
Total fights 46
Wins 44
Wins by KO 32
Losses 1
Draws 1
No contests 0

Salvador Sánchez Narváez (January 26, 1959 – August 12, 1982) was a Mexican boxer born in the town of Santiago Tianguistenco, Estado de México. Sanchez was the WBC and lineal featherweight champion from 1980 to 1982. Many of his contemporaries as well as boxing writers believe that, had it not been for his premature death, Sanchez could have gone on to become the greatest Featherweight boxer of all time. Sánchez died on August 12, 1982 in a car accident from Querétaro to San Luis Potosí [1] He is also the uncle of Salvador Sánchez II.[2]

Sánchez is ranked number 88 on The Ring's list of 100 greatest punchers of all time.[3] In 1991, Sánchez was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame.

Career

Sánchez started his professional career at the age of 16, as a teenager (after a brief amateur career consisting of reportedly 4 amateur bouts) he started piling up wins against tough Mexican opposition. His first fight of note came in his 19th professional fight against the Mexican bantamweight champion Antonio Becerra. Becerra proved too experienced for the young Sánchez, the bout ended in a split decision defeat for Sánchez.

Sánchez kept on fighting and moved to the Featherweight division. Soon he had beaten people like the Puerto Rican featherweight champion Felix Trinidad Sr., on his way to securing a title shot at world champion Danny "Little Red" Lopez, a popular TV fighter of the late 1970s who was an impressive fighter and had won some spectacular fights against the likes of former world champion David Kotei (twice), Juan Malvares and Mike Ayala. Confident and hard to beat, Lopez was beaten by the 21-year-old Sánchez, who knocked out the defending champion in 13 rounds in Phoenix, Arizona, United States on February 2, 1980. Sanchez defended his title for the first time with a 15-round unanimous decision against Ruben Castillo (47–1). Thinking it was just a case of 'beginner's luck' (as it was Sánchez's first world title fight ever), Lopez looked for a rematch and this he got, in Las Vegas. This time Sánchez defeated Lopez by 14th-round TKO. In his next fight, he defeated Patrick Ford (15–0) .

On December 13, 1980, Sánchez defeated future champion Juan Laporte by unanimous decision. Sánchez then defended his title against Roberto Castanon (43–1–0) and scored a win over Nicky Perez (50–3–0). Then undefeated World Jr Featherweight champion Wilfredo Gómez (32–0–1) went up in weight and challenged Sánchez. Sánchez retained the crown by a knockout in round eight on August 21, 1981, in Las Vegas, and Gómez had to return to the Jr. Featherweight division.

With that victory, Salvador was an unknown to the casual boxing fan no more. He became a household name all over the United States that night.

In his next fight, he defeated Olympic medalist Pat Cowdell by split decision. His defense vs unheralded Jorge "Rocky" Garcia was the first fight featuring two featherweights ever to be televised by HBO. He beat Garcia punch after punch, but the challenger gave honor to his nickname, an unknown fighter who lasts the distance with the world champion.

On July 21, 1982, Sánchez faced future champion Azumah Nelson at Madison Square Garden. Nelson, a late substitute for mandatory challenger Mario Miranda, was unknown at the time however, and was expected to only go a few rounds with the champ. It was an intense battle, with Sánchez managing to drop his young charge in the 7th round. After that they engaged in violent exchange after violent exchange. In the 15th, Sánchez broke out finally, connecting with a serious combination that dropped the challenger almost outside the ring. Referee Tony Perez had to stop the fight seconds later. Azumah Nelson went on to have a glittering career and was inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 2004.[4]

Sanchez's dominance as featherweight champion was such that he held title defense victories over the next three fighters (LaPorte, Gomez, and Nelson) who won the WBC title after his death. Also notably, he went 4-0, all four wins by knockouts, against fellow members of the International Boxing Hall of Fame (Danny Lopez twice-KO 13, KO 14-Wilfredo Gomez-KO 8-and Azumah Nelson-KO 15)

Death

As he was training for a rematch with Laporte set for September, he crashed on the early morning of August 12, 1982, while driving his Porsche 928 sports car along the federal highway from Santiago de Querétaro to San Luis Potosí, dying instantly.[5] At the time of his death, there were talks about a bout with Miranda, a rematch with Gómez or a challenge of world lightweight champion Alexis Argüello. The latter was already off the table. There had been negotiations between the Sanchez and Argüello camps but they broke off when Argüello chose to campaign as a junior welterweight. Salvador Sánchez finished his career 44-1-1. Sánchez was posthumously inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1991.

Acting

Sanchez appeared as himself, albeit as a Junior Lightweight world champion, in the 1983 film The Last Fight, released after his death. The movie was dedicated to him. In it, Sanchez shared scenes with Ruben Blades, who played a challenger to Sanchez's title.[6]

Professional record

44 Wins (32 knockouts, 12 decisions), 1 Lost, 1 Draw[7]
Res. Record Opponent Type Rd., Time Date Location Notes
Win 44–1–1 Ghana Azumah Nelson TKO 15 (15), 1:49 July 21, 1982 United States Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York, United States Retained WBC & Lineal Featherweight titles.
Win 43–1–1 Mexico Jorge Garcia UD 15 May 8, 1982 United States Reunion Arena, Dallas, Texas, United States Retained WBC & Lineal Featherweight titles.
Win 42–1–1 United Kingdom Pat Cowdell SD 15 December 12, 1981 United States Astrodome, Houston, Texas, United States Retained WBC & Lineal Featherweight titles.
Win 41–1–1 Puerto Rico Wilfredo Gómez TKO 8 (15), 2:09 August 21, 1981 United States Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Retained WBC & Lineal Featherweight titles.
Win 40–1–1 United States Nicky Perez UD 10 July 11, 1981 United States Los Angeles, California, United States
Win 39–1–1 Spain Roberto Castanon TKO 10 (15), 1:09 March 22, 1981 United States Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Retained WBC & Lineal Featherweight titles.
Win 38–1–1 Puerto Rico Juan Laporte UD 15 December 13, 1980 United States County Coliseum, El Paso, Texas, United States Retained WBC & Lineal Featherweight titles.
Win 37–1–1 Guyana Patrick Ford MD 15 September 13, 1980 United States Freeman Coliseum, San Antonio, Texas, United States Retained WBC & Lineal Featherweight titles.
Win 36–1–1 United States Danny Lopez TKO 14 (15), 1:42 June 21, 1980 United States Caesars Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada, United States Retained WBC & Lineal Featherweight titles.
Win 35–1–1 United States Ruben Castillo UD 15 April 12, 1980 United States Civic Auditorium, Tucson, Arizona, United States Retained WBC & Lineal Featherweight titles.
Win 34–1–1 United States Danny Lopez TKO 13(15), 0:51 February 2, 1980 United States Veteran's Memorial Coliseum, Phoenix, Arizona, United States Won WBC & Lineal Featherweight titles.
Win 33–1–1 Mexico Rafael Gandarilla TKO 5 (10) December 15, 1979 Mexico Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico
Win 32–1–1 United States Richard Rozelle KO 3 (10), 1:55 September 15, 1979 United States Sports Arena, Los Angeles, California, United States
Win 31–1–1 Puerto Rico Félix Trinidad Sr. TKO 5 (10) August 7, 1979 United States Summit, Houston, Texas, United State
Win 30–1–1 Mexico Rosalio Muro KO 3 (10) July 22, 1979 Mexico San Luis Potosí, San Luis Potosí, Mexico
Win 29–1–1 Philippines Fel Clemente UD 12 June 17, 1979 United States Convention Center Arena, San Antonio, Texas, United States
Win 28–1–1 Mexico Salvador Torres TKO 7 (10) May 19, 1979 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 27–1–1 United States James Martinez UD 10 March 13, 1979 United States San Antonio, Texas, United States
Win 26–1–1 Mexico Carlos Mimila KO 3 (10) February 3, 1979 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 25–1–1 Panama José Santana TKO 2 (10) December 16, 1978 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 24–1–1 Philippines Edwin Alarcon TKO 9 (10) November 21, 1978 United States San Antonio, Texas, United States
Win 23–1–1 United States Francisco Ponce KO 2 (10) September 26, 1978 United States Houston, Texas, United States
Win 22–1–1 Ecuador Hector Cortez TKO 7 (10) August 13, 1978 Mexico Mazatlán, Sinaloa, Mexico
Win 21–1–1 Mexico José Sánchez UD 10 July 1, 1978 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Draw 20–1–1 Mexico Juan Escobar MD 10 March 15, 1978 United States Olympic Auditorium, Los Angeles, California, United States
Win 20–1 Mexico Eliseo Cosme PTS 10 December 5, 1977 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 19–1 Mexico José Luis Soto PTS 10 November 11, 1977 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Loss 18–1 Mexico Antonio Becerra SD 12 September 9, 1977 Mexico Mazatlán, Sinaloa, Mexico vacant Mexico Bantamweight title on the line.
Win 18–0 Mexico Rosalio Badillo TKO 5 (10) May 21, 1977 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 17–0 Mexico Daniel Felizardo KO 5 (10) March 12, 1977 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 16–0 Mexico Raúl López TKO 10 (10) February 5, 1977 Mexico Mexicali, Baja California, Mexico
Win 15–0 Mexico Antonio Leon TKO 10 (10) December 25, 1976 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 14–0 Mexico Saul Montana TKO 9 (10) October 31, 1976 Mexico Nuevo Laredo, Tamaulipas, Mexico
Win 13–0 Mexico Joel Valdez TKO 9 (10) August 11, 1976 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 12–0 Mexico Pedro Sandoval TKO 9 (10) July 5, 1976 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 11–0 Mexico Fidel Trejo KO 6 (10) May 26, 1976 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 10–0 Mexico Jose Chavez TKO 7 (10) April 24, 1976 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 9–0 Mexico Serafin Isidro Pacheco TKO 4 (8) March 31, 1976 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 8–0 Mexico Javier Solis TKO 7 (8) February 25, 1976 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 7–0 Mexico Juan Granados TKO 3 (8) January 24, 1976 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 6–0 Mexico Fidel Trejo UD 8 December 11, 1975 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 5–0 Mexico Candido Sandoval TKO 7 (8) November 25, 1975 Mexico Mexico City, Distrito Federal, Mexico
Win 4–0 Mexico Cesar Lopez KO 4 (6) October 19, 1975 Mexico Misantla, Veracruz, Mexico
Win 3–0 Mexico Victor Martinez KO 2 (6) August 10, 1975 Mexico Misantla, Veracruz, Mexico
Win 2–0 Mexico Miguel Ortiz KO 3 (6) May 25, 1975 Mexico Misantla, Varacruz, Mexico
Win 1–0 Mexico Al Gardeno KO 3 (4) May 4, 1975 Mexico Veracruz, Veracruz, Mexico Salvador's professional debut.

See also

Trivia

In the movie 21, Ben Campbell, played by Jim Sturgess, introduces himself to a girl as Salvador Sánchez.[8]

Folk Rock band Sun Kil Moon recorded an eponymous song about Sanchez on their 2003 album Ghosts of the Great Highway.

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Danny Lopez
WBC Featherweight Champion
Feb 2 1980 – Aug 12 1982
Died in car crash
Vacant
Title next held by
Juan Laporte
Lineal Featherweight Champion
Feb 2 1980 – Aug 12 1982
Died in car crash
Vacant
Title next held by
Eusebio Pedroza

See also

References

  1. ^ Luevanos, Fernando (2006-10-04). "Mexicano Salvador Sánchez". Box Rec. Archived from the original on 2015-01-04. Retrieved 2010-06-23. 
  2. ^ Seckbach, Elie (2009-10-04). "Sánchez like Sánchez". Fan House. Retrieved 2010-06-23. 
  3. ^ Eisele, Andrew (2003). "Ring Magazine's 100 Greatest Punchers". About.com. Retrieved 2017-12-15. 
  4. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2008-10-22. Retrieved 2008-10-09. 
  5. ^ Lightweight champ Sanchez dies in crash
  6. ^ http://www.salvadorsanchez.com/English/legacy.html
  7. ^ http://boxrec.com/list_bouts.php?human_id=002201&cat=boxer[dead link]
  8. ^ [1]

External links

  • Salvador Sánchez page at the International Boxing Hall of Fame
  • Salvador Sánchez on the Ring Magazine Cover – November 1981 Issue
  • The Legend of Salvador Sanchez – Fight Fanatics
  • Seconds Out Article
  • Salvador Sánchez at Find a Grave
  • Professional boxing record for Salvador Sánchez from BoxRec
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