Arturo Gatti vs Micky Ward III – Highlights (FIGHT of the Year)

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June 7th, 2003. In “The Final Chapter”, Arturo “Thunder” Gatti and “Irish” Micky Ward met in the ring for the third and final time to close the book on their epic rivalry that started 35 months ago where Ward won a close MD10 the first time and Gatti evened up to score in the rematch via UD10.

Prefight records; Gatti 35(28)-6, Ward 38(27)-12.

Entering the rubber match, Ward had beaten commendable oppositions in Emanuel Augustus, Reggie Green & Arturo Gatti. On the other hand, Gatti had triumphs over top opponents in Calvin Grove, Micky Ward, Tracy Harris Patterson, Terron Milett, Wilson Rodriguez & Gabriel Ruelas.

For the first 3 rounds, Gatti controlled the bout with the same stick and move strategy which he executed to near perfection in their previous meeting and Ward only able to connect occasionally.

25 seconds into the 4th frame, Gatti broke his right hand when he landed a punch to Ward’s hipbone. Ward seized the advantage and follow up with a barrage of shots. However, Gatti was not discouraged as he utilized his left to return fire after surviving Ward’s onslaught.

From this moment on, the fight became increasingly competitive but Gatti was still the more efficient despite fighting mostly with 1 good arm; as he continued to land punches in bunches and danced away before Ward could retaliate with his own offense. However, there were occasions in which Ward was able to close the distance and nail Gatti with hard shots.

Ward landed an accidental low blow in the 2nd round and Gatti limped for a few moments while Gatti also connected with a shot below the belt in in the 5th. Timeout were called in both instances, but no points were deducted (not shown).

Gatti was decked in the 6th with a right hand by Ward, who did not get to follow up as the bell sounded.

The 7th round was perhaps the most exciting round of this third meeting, and definitely one of the best rounds in their trilogy of fights.

“No championship is involved. And you get more action in a 10 rounds than you normally get in a 15 round fight”.
– Emmanuel Stewart

“The most overused word in sports commentary is ‘incredible’. This is another incredible fight!”
– Jim Lampley

“The Atlantic Ocean outsides these doors are turning into the Red Sea”.
– Larry Merchant

After 27 minutes of an all action bout, Gatti was evidently ahead in the cards as he clearly won a majority of the rounds despite Ward’s knockdown in the 6th.

In the final frame, both fighters (just as they did in their 2 previous fights) fought the last 3 minutes with full explosiveness to end their historic series of fights. Both embraced after the final bell to the thunderous applause of the crowd.

After 30 rounds, the final chapter of their majestic rivalry was closed with a UD10 in favor of Arturo Gatti.

The 3 judges scored it 97-92 & 96-93 (2x).

Ring Magazine named Arturo Gatti vs Micky Ward III as the Fight of the Year 2003.

Hope you guys enjoy the highlights of “The Final Chapter” and be sure to SUBSCRIBE for more oxing goodness!

Keep your punches up boxing heads!

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